Overcoming Dystopia with the Art Drone: Who is H.O. Schmidt?

Fantasy, empathy, peace, respect and love open new perspectives on the future.

The painter, action artist, sculptor and publicist Horst Olaf Schmidt was born in 1960 and lives in Remscheid. For over 40 years he has been dealing with the creative impulses of contemporary art. In his works, Abstract Expressionism and Neo-Fluxus do not remain just L’art pour l’art. He extends them with the representation and processing of time-bound, socio-political themes.

H.O. Schmidt polarizes

The Cold War and Germany in the middle of it – this epoch shaped his generation. This barely comprehensible danger at the time of the Cuba crisis determined the lives of the people at the beginning and beyond. It also inspired H.O.Schmidt in his humanistic-pacifist basic attitude: There is no war in which there is an actual winner. It is and remains a tragedy.

The world out of joint

After a short period of time, when the Cold War seemed to be over, the ‘end of history’ was heralded. It was thought that human rights, democracy and the rule of law could now finally take root in the world without hindrance. Today people are worried again. The brave new world of globalization with the promise of worldwide prosperity and technological networking has cracked.

Ladder to heaven, winged linen lyra with rose plaster and Notre Dame

However, creative imagination, human empathy, an active will for peace, respect for diversity and love open up new ways of seeing and acting without leaving an ecological footprint. Instead of exploiting the earth, one should approach it with a poetic and protective gaze. With his intensive and constructive way of working, the artist is today working in a painterly-militant way for the protection of nature and the reconstruction of destroyed cultural monuments. His talent of observation and his spirit of research are incorporated into his work.


The artist is fascinated by the idea of transferring phenomena from nature to technology. Leonardo da Vinci’s idea to transfer the flight of birds to flying machines was taken up by H.O. Schmidt to reflect on the relationship between nature, technology and art from the perspective of the 21st century: The faster we destroy nature, the fewer opportunities we will have to observe it in order to draw inspiration for new, sustainable technologies from its natural wonders.

We must adapt to nature, not the other way around!

This is the fictional message of the art drone. It is fragile, vulnerable and perishable. It was created from selected fragments of existing artworks. Parallel to the natural events, as a constant process of renewal, the artist gives the fragments new contexts of meaning in their reprocessing. The technological concept of the drone is thus transformed into its poetic opposite. The artist thematizes the fact that the human striving for brutal control of nature is increasingly becoming its doom. The art drone is a symbol for an ethical reorientation towards fantasy, empathy, peace, respect and love as real visions of the future.

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