I grew up on flat land, under big skies without television. Sunsets were entertainment, church and catalysts for thinking and feeling across vast distances. Sunsets were frustrating though because I could not hold on to the awesome beauty.

I love the power of colour, it can utterly transform the meaning of a form by changing it from a dull grey to an exuberant brilliant red for instance. I grew up in the fifties in war ravaged Germany and the hearts and souls of people were mostly grey. I found colours in nature in flowers. But firstly I had to work through a very grey period where I covered all my steel sculptures with a grey, micaceous industrial paint. I couldn’t conceive of colours yet. But then, bit by bit I applied glowing colours, first on the backs where they couldn’t be seen but only guessed at from their reflections against the white walls. In the mid nineties I had a breakthrough, I made large brightly coloured wall flowers from steel that had the lightness of folded paper. I made my steel garden.

Now I construct open cages/containers for elusive stuff: joy, fear, humour, awe; welded together piece by piece from angle iron. I can choose to use colours or greys quite freely, these pieces are no longer in the grip of a troubling past. The containers merely suggest a volume, like a 3-d drawing would. In these I want to hold onto something that I love, a moment of absorption in beauty, an understanding for a microsecond of infinity or eternity. Because my containers are open on all sides they can do that: they can contain temporarily the wind, sunlight, sunset and darkness. A fragrance, thoughts, maybe some mist or rain – all these elements pass through. Our bodies have blood and air pulsing through; they are containers that hold, for a while, the most precious substance: life.