Tree Huggin'
German Insects & Flowers

When I was born in early 1964 I was what they called a baby.

Art has been an important part of my life as far as I can remember.
My earliest recollection of me being obsessed with art was at the age of 5.

It seemed that I actually had some talent, when at age ten, I duplicated cartoon characters on a scale of 1:20, perfectly in proportion, without having to sketch.

At the age of 12, I sold my first oil painting to my uncle for about US $ 10. I still think he ripped me off because as far as I remember, it was a damned good painting.
And I would love to have it back but he was shot somewhere in Paraguay a few years back. A dramatic oracle of how I will lose touch with many of my works later on.

When I was 15, I started to get into photography and pottery besides drawing cartoons.
At around the same time my friends and I began traveling all over Europe. We would hitchhike to places like Corsica, Greece, Istanbul, all over Turkey, Syria and Italy and we would always bring our sketch books. Most of the time we didn't sketch though.
We were more interested in young female tourists, the wild growing hemp plants and the dozens of different Mediterranean versions of aniseed liquor.

At age 18, I went to college and took up art - of course.
I wanted to get laid at that time and not studying anything about art.
Still I did my obligatory travels through Italy and France to see all those magnificent pieces of art. More often than not on the weekends I would hitchhike to Italy, sometimes to Paris, Berlin or whatever (I usually took Fridays off from school).

Cartooning was something I always enjoyed. I love to draw and I love to make people laugh. I drew hundreds of cartoons of which some actually got published. (Sueddeutsche Zeitung, Stadtzeitung Muenchen).
I was also a member of the Carikatur und Cartoon Contor in Munich, Germany. In 1984 I had my first show. I knew the owner of the trendiest night club in Munich at that time, P1, which was actually in the basement of the Haus der Kunst (A big and beautiful Museum).
I suggested to him that since his club is inside a museum he should feature also some art works and have shows.
He loved the idea and asked me to be the first artist to have a show in his club. At that point I had maybe about two artworks. Looking at the place I calculated that I would need about 60 and I had two months time. So I invited my best friend who in turn invited another friend. So what supposed to be my first one man show became a very successful group show. My series of paintings were called : "Mobile Japonicae".

Soon afterwards a gallery in Schwabing, Munich, called GI Gallery invited me to show my work there. I showed some of the Mobile Japonicae paintings but mostly sketches and experiments thereof.

By then I finished school and I did my duty for ze Fatherland. We have obligatory draft in Germany but I was able to fight it in court. Instead I had to serve as an in-house slave of a hospital. It wasn't all that bad though. Part of my job was to get dead people and bring them to the morgue.
That was fun. Especially when you got to share an elevator with a visiting family and a big tin coffin which we fondly called the "Silver Arrow".

August '86 I sold everything I had (which came to about US $ 32.27) and I was on my way to travel around the world.
For the next 16 months I took a train from Berlin to Beijing, traveled all over the Soviet Union, China, Hong Kong, Macaw, Tibet, Nepal, India, Burma, Thailand and finally the Philippines where I got stuck. I will publish the story about my journey, including my trip to Mount Everest, separately when I find the time to digitize it.

I met a lot of artists in the Philippines which was one of the reasons why I liked the place so much. I also met my wife Nena which was another reason why I liked that place so much.
But the real reason was that the place is packed with the most beautiful women in the world and they happened to think that I was very good looking.

I had my first one man show in the Philippines in 1988 sponsored by the Goethe Institute, the German Cultural Center. It was called " Öme ".
Besides working as a fashion model, I participated in numerous group shows and events like designing the stage for Enrico Labayen's Lab Project at the Cultural Center of the Philippines.
My next two shows I held simultaneously in 1991 at the Brix Gallery in Makati, Metro Manila, Philippines. Face Value and The House of the Reincarnated Swan.

In the meantime I founded and operated a handicraft business. We mostly exported sea shells and similar things to Germany.

The First Gulf war killed my business and I was ready for something new.
A fellow artist invited me to work as a designer in an advertising agency. During the next two years I careered to art director and designer in charge of special projects at Leo Burnett Manila.
I also painted a number of commission works and sold many of existing artworks.
Soon I realized that I could do much better working on my own. I resigned and opened my own company - Ponte Works, designing and producing sales displays for department stores.
During the next 9 years I opened a graphic design studio - Ponte Asia, a Freecard company - Wazzap Cards, a web design company - Wazzap Net, a branch of Ponte Asia in Hong Kong and another web production company in Berkeley San Francisco - Ponte Web.

All my internet related companies collapsed in 2001 in the dotcom crash and I concentrated on making my money producing catalogs and brochures for American companies.
I would shoot products in Atlanta, Georgia, send the files to Manila where my guys would do the design work, then onwards to Hong Kong where my partner would print them and then we ship the final product back to the US. That was fun. During that time I took about 20,000 professional and artistic photographs. On April 28, 2002 after a night of drinking, and other recreational drugs in a friend’s apartment in San Francisco, I decided that it was time for me to get back to art full time.

I closed Ponte Works and resigned from actively participating at Ponte Asia, my design company.
Although being a businessman was fun and I gained invaluable experience, art is so much more fun.

Since then I produced hundreds of artworks in all kind of media which I publish on a (almost) daily basis on this website.
The website is my "Gesamtkunstwerk" a syntheses of the arts, my all encompassing, slightly ridiculing classifier, a constantly evolving, mutating, living work of art.

In November 2003, I published a reader's digest version of the website : "The Shy Stick Insect Hunter Magazine", the website you can bring to the bathroom and read it there.
It has proofed itself to be an excellent medium to introduce my art to my audience.

Based in Hong Kong and Manila I write and take photographs for several local and international magazines and newspapers and features my art in galleries across the world.

So far I had 11 one man shows in galleries and other venues in Germany, Hong Kong, Philippines and San Francisco.

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The Art of Andy Maluche - copyright

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