Michael Mobius is one of the finest talents in erotic art to come out of Eastern Europe, or what was Eastern Europe at the time of his birth in 1968.
Hailing from the area near Dresden, Mobius was raised in East Germany and showed an early interest in art. He claims that his first paintings in childhood were of animals and comic book characters and that maturity turned his attention and admiration towards female beauty. It was this interest in erotica which would eventually propel him to fame, but he didn’t commit to art from the beginning.
As a teen, Mobius attended a vocational school to learn construction, a field in which he worked until joining the army at the age of 21. His service spanned the fall of the Berlin Wall and the collapse of the Eastern Bloc, an event which would have major ramifications for all East Germans, Mobius included. His eyes were suddenly opened to a variety of images from the west that provoked his imagination. Despite his artistic compulsions, he continued in the construction field and entered university to study Engineering. It was to be a relatively short-lived career, however, as he could not resist his artistic inspiration for very long.
This inspiration came from two primary sources. The first was the artwork of Hajime Sorayama. He claims to have been “instantly drawn” to Sorayama’s pinup art and credits the Japanese artist with helping him develop his own artistic sensibility. The young German taught himself to at first imitate and later to move beyond the compositions of Sorayama.
The greatest influence, however, came from a rather different source. The opening of East Germany to the West brought not only Western movies, but also Western movie posters. Particularly fascinating to Mobius were the posters done by the Italian artist Renato Casaro, whose paintings apparently transformed the young German. He wrote a letter to Casaro and was surprised not only to receive a response but to be invited to meet the man who would become a lifelong mentor. Casaro would come to teach Mobius much of what he now understands about light and shadow, atmosphere and life.
After his Engineering studies, the artist took a big chance and entered one of his artworks into the 2004 European Championship for Illustrations. He won. The next several years brought illustration and industrial design work for record companies, architectural firms and other industrial employers. In order to sharpen his already precise techniques, Mobius entered the Art Academy in Dresden. It was during this time as an art student that he began working with Playboy Germany, as well as other magazines such as Cosmo. The relationship with Playboy would prove to be extremely fruitful and continues to this day.
The art of Mobius represents some of the finest erotic art of the past century. He pays enormous attention to the use of light and shadow – partly a result of his relationship with Renato Casaro – and what he calls a “heightened sense of reality.” At the same time, he strives for honesty. His purpose, in his own words, is “not to paint pretty women but to visually communicate the beauty of the female form and the power of a sensual moment.” Even a brief look at his work is enough to convince any viewer that he succeeds at this.
Since the late 1990s, Mobius has exhibited his work very broadly. His paintings have been shown at the Robert Bane Gallery, the Robert Bane Global Gallery, Playboy Expos, a variety of glamour, comic and art conventions, fine art expos and pinup shows in France, the United States, Spain and Japan. The full list of exhibitions is extensive and serves as a testament to the artist’s appeal.
Michael continues to produce erotic works for a variety of clients and for sale through his Mobiusart Online Shop. He has also recently collaborated on Playboy’s unique line of fine art prints called “Uniquely Playmates.” This project clearly places him in the same ranks as other pinup heavyweights such as Olivia de Berardinis.
This master of mood and character currently spends much of his time in Beverly Hills, California. He also travels around the world looking for inspiration, enjoying Germany and Italy in particular, the latter country being where his faithful mentor resides.
- winner of 2004 European Championship for Illustrations
- attended Dresden Art Academy
- produced illustrations for Playboy Germany and Cosmo
- exhibited work at the Robert Bane Gallery, Robert Bane Global Gallery, Playboy Expos and a variety of other comic, art and pinup expos and conventions
- collaborated on Playboy’s Uniquely Playmates