Surreal Sand Art

By Danielle Pope

Surreal Sand Art
How a young German artist is changing the way we think about sand art

German artist Tim Bengel is transforming the art world, using simple tools of sand and foil. Bengel painstakingly creates his artworks by first layering white sand and gold paper onto a canvas. He then fills the negative space with black sand. The result is finalised when Bengal tips the canvases upright, allowing the black sand to collect and spread accordingly, to reveal landscapes like the New York City skyline, or intimate portraits.

Bengel says that he was drawn to art as a child, but did not like its traditional conventions. “Since I was a little boy I was curious about art, but I couldn’t understand it because I couldn’t follow its rules,” said Bengel. “But in art there are not rules like maths or grammar. For me art is about a feeling, and that is what is so exciting.”

Bengel says that he wanted to come up with a new technique of creating art differently, and began exploring the idea of his sand art. He says that he was initially met with some scepticism, but now he has achieved “every young artists’ dream,” as he is about to host his first solo exhibition in New York in September this year.

Bengel has also achieved great popularity across social media, with his videos being viewed over 80 million times. Today he is studying art and philosophy, at the elite university in Tübingen.

In advising other aspiring artists, Bengel’s advice is as simple as it is powerful, “If you have a dream – dream it big.”


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