Timo Helgert: Infuses a sense of harmony and serenity into today’s fast-paced society

Timo Helgert
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German digital artist Timo Helgert is best known for his stunning virtual installations and digital art, influenced by nature, as he aims to take you on a journey of escapism into dimensions far from the chaos of everyday life.

Hegert’s tools of sorcery comprised the properties of Augmented Reality and 3D design as he depicts his illusionary matrix of atmospheres from a colony of the iconic flamingo on the subway to a blaze isolated in a glass box on a beach. Hegert’s work is a never-ending flood of aesthetic immersion that keeps you captivated.

Timo Helgert

I aim to create escapist art that transports people to other worlds and instils a sense of harmony and serenity

Timo Helgert

In collaboration with Technology giant HONOR, Helgert magic reimagines the historic landmark of Hamburg’s Speicherstadt through Augmented Reality. In this interview, we learn more about Helgert’s creative process, inspiration and his project with HONOR.

Q: Hi Timo, can you please introduce yourself for those who do not know?

A: My name is Timo, and I’m a visual artist from Germany, currently based in Seoul.

Q: Can you tell us how you started in arts, how art has played a role in your life, and why you decided to become an artist?

A: I started my online art journey at 14, and my first venture into AR was in 2016, when I started looking for new ways to tell stories and convey important messages through my artwork. Using emerging techniques, including augmented reality and 3D design, I aim to create escapist art that transports people to other worlds and instils a sense of harmony and serenity in today’s “always-on” fast-paced society.

Entrapment – Courtesy of the artist ©TimoHelgert

Q: Your practice strongly focuses on digital media, augmented reality, and 3D design, and you’re widely known for fusing landmarks and objects into surrealist imagery that’s detailed and vibrant. Can you tell us more about your creative process and what inspires you to make the pieces you do? 

A: My work is heavily influenced by nature and the natural planet. I love contrast. Growing up in a small German village, surrounded by forests with no cinemas, but clean air and beautiful nature, was always something I took for granted.

Everyone in my village thought it was normal. I only started to truly miss and think about it when I moved to Seoul, South Korea, a megacity where a blue sky is celebrated because it’s so rare. And this is when my mind truly started to explore. What is the connection between urban places and nature? Why do we need to have black-and-white thinking? What would the world look like if we had balance? And through my art, I want to explore this connection in several ways. My goal is to create this unique perspective where we don’t take everyday objects for granted but appreciate them.

Blooming Future

Q: In a collaboration with HONOR, using augmented reality, you creatively reimagine an iconic landmark in Hamburg’s Speicherstadt, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Can you tell me more about this project and why you choose to collaborate with HONOR, the development process and what users can expect to experience?

A: HONOR’s Gateway to the Future initiative supports the digital culture boom that is now upon us. Everyone is talking about the metaverse. Through this project, HONOR wanted to demonstrate how accessible smartphone technology, including AI and AR, has the power to enrich cultural heritage, allowing people to appreciate their communities in more immersive ways than ever before. Through this technology, we can not only learn more about the history of our neighbourhoods, but we can also inspire future generations to engage with cultural heritage in new ways. I find this concept really inspiring, which is why I was delighted to partner with HONOR on this initiative.

As a German, I was very excited to create an AR experience that reflects Hamburg’s status as one of the greenest cities in the world. “Blooming Future” creatively imagines what the Wasserschloss would look like in a green future where beautiful plants and endangered species can thrive, taking this historic landmark into an otherworldly realm.

During the production process, when we explored the most iconic sites in Hamburg, I was immediately inspired by the beautiful Wasserschloss. My mind went to the concept of “Nature Castle” instead of “Water Castle”. I wanted to use natural elements, including flora and fauna, as a form of art to highlight the beauty of the natural environment.

MetroCourtesy of the artist ©TimoHelgert

Q: There’s been a trend in the last few years of brands, companies and artists seamlessly integrating the physical and digital worlds to deliver a more immersive and realistic experience for their customers, community and fans. What do you think is propelling this interest?

A: Major brands and global institutions are staking their claim in the metaverse. This is the next generation of the Internet, and thanks to emerging technologies, including augmented and virtual reality, it has enormous potential to reach consumers in more immersive ways. The pandemic has catapulted this technology into the mainstream, and as a result, we’re now seeing consumers demanding these sorts of hybrid experiences in their everyday life.

As a visual artist, I see this as a huge opportunity to harness the power of technology for the greater good of society. As we look forward, it’s equally important to look back and honour where we came from. I believe we should use the metaverse to educate people, entertain people and engage people and tell important stories about our past while also discovering the possibilities of the future.

Q: Technology has always been a tool for artists to express themselves, with the rise of A.I. and augmented reality, in your opinion, what would the future relationship between technology, an artist and their art be?

A: As an artist, I’m fascinated by where this technology will take us. It opens up a new realm of possibilities for creative expression, which in turn has the power to touch and move viewers in much more pronounced ways.

Tajmahal Flamingo – Courtesy of the artist ©TimoHelgert

Q: The studio is the sacred temple of creativity. What are three things you can’t live without in your studio?

A: My computer and all related tools. Green Plants. A Hario Switch coffee dripper and a fresh roast from the small cafe next to my house. If I have these three things, I am definitely in my zone and feel excited to work on ideas and new concepts.

Q: What’s next for you as an artist?

A: I want to explore how AI disrupts the art scene. Furthermore, I will be launching a physical exhibition in Seoul and hope that many visitors will come. Everything else is a secret for now, but we hope you can come and explore 😉

Q: Lastly, what does art mean to you?

A: Art is a large word, and its definition can change depending on the situation and experience. For me, art is a way of expression. It’s my mission to use my skills and tools to communicate something visual that might spark ideas or provoke unique thoughts in the viewer. In a world where we see tons of ads daily, many of our choices are made for us. I think we should create more content that stimulates independent thinking and gives people the chance to see common places from a new perspective.




©2022 Timo Helgert