I am very pleased to introduce to you Bronwyn Riedel, Co-Founder and Creative Director of Bauwerk who brings with her a wealth of wonderful knowledge. We get to know her a little more intimately in this insightful interview. May I introduce… Bronwyn Riedel.
Who is Bronwyn Riedel?
I am the co founder of Bauwerk and the colour creative director, I do our marketing, colour development and forward planning, I am lucky to travel a lot, from our head office in Australia to the Middle East where we have a sister company DMC and this year we began in the UK and Holland. I spend each European summer in our house in Germany developing new colours and having fun in our dream house here with work and friends and family.
How did Bauwerk begin?
Before Bauwerk I was a textile designer, and completely obsessed with decorating and renovating. Together with Andreas, my husband, we had just renovated our house and had a stone construction business, so we decided to bring our joint loves and experience together to change our focus to making lime paints. Andreas had always made his own lime paints as he had noticed over the years of renovating in both Germany and Australia that lime paints worked best with buildings. I had taught and worked with colour for 10 years and had my own way of understanding and creating colours, so off we went. Within a month we had bought an old shop in Fremantle and we created the business with our first customers, constantly making new colours and tweaking our paint recipe until we were happy with it.
Lime paint is a truly amazing paint. It is made with nature and it works with the nature of the building and I just love it. Other paint systems are just a plastic coating which give a building its colour. Lime wash is like alchemy it is a deceptively simple paint but requires a lot of knowledge and good quality base products – you need to be like a good wine maker.
When making our lime paints we believe that what you leave out is as important as what you put in. We rely on the natural properties of the lime to do the work instead of petrochemicals. Lime paint starts out as limestone that is heated, then slaked in water for months to become liquid, it is them made into paint by a simple process, when you paint it on your wall it takes carbon dioxide from the air (like trees do) and turns it back into limestone. A truly beautiful and amazing process.
How would your friends and family describe you?
I am not sure, I hope they would say that I am generous and kind, I love to be busy and I like to talk a lot.
What do you enjoy most about your work?
Seeing our paint on walls and playing around with colours, I also love to take an idea as far as I can, so expanding our paint overseas and making the best and most beautiful lime paint that we can.
What has been your greatest professional achievement so far?
Well my favourite is having my son work with me, and to have a successful family business. I am also very proud of the work we have done in the Middle East bringing environmentally friendly building products to that market, when everyone said it couldn’t be done.
Who inspires you?
My friends, the ones who seem to understand what’s important in life, all the people that just go out and get on with it, and those that are completely different from me as there is always so much to learn from other people’s way of thinking.
Where/how do you gain inspiration?
I take inspiration from everywhere, but most of all from nature. I love walking and often think up or see colours when I am out and about. I think nature tells us everything we need to know about colour the subtleties and the proportions. Also love just wandering around in a city with no plan just looking at everything, then lots of ideas just flood in.
Greatest advice anyone has ever given you?
Love your friends and family, and make the most of everything that life offers you.
Whats next for Bronwyn Riedel?
Expansion I hope…wishing to grow Bauwerk even more.
The short of it…