Thursday Salute to Originals: Jet Art

It is priceless to see how different artists turn the most unlikely objects into means of producing fantastic and inspiring art. In our previous ‘Salute to Originals’ blog posts, we have seen artists use mediums such as chewing gum, sand, yarn, and more. While today’s artist (Princess Tarinan von Anhalt) uses a common medium – paint – her technique is anything but ordinary. The German Princess uses what she calls her “11 million dollar paint brush:” the wind and heat from a jet engine to weld containers of paint against a canvas.


Von Anhalt calls her unusual approach to painting “Jet Art.” In order for her to put one of her performances together, she must first secure airport approval, prep the area with plastic tarps and platforms, book a pilot and jet, and invite anywhere between 50 – 300 guests to her show. Then her mission becomes how she will engage and entertain her guests throughout the show. She has made her grand entrances by both motorcycle and helicopter. Guests are willing to pay Von Anhalt up to $50,000 each just to watch the live performance.


Since a jet engine’s wind is stronger than a hurricane, she must be extremely careful about where she stands between the jet and the canvas. Otherwise, she could get seared by the exhaust or drawn into the jet’s compressor. A key factor in her safety is making sure the pilot is fully informed that her performances are not done with the engine on full throttle. Her team also uses hand signals to communicate effectively. Once Von Anhalt is in performance mode, she doesn’t worry too much about being in danger. She focuses on the creation of her piece, which she says sometimes she can predict its outcome, and other times it’s a complete surprise. She describes the wind’s prediction of where the paint lands as “the emotion,” which to her is better than anything else.


Von Anhalt’s Jet Art is about much more than simply tossing some paint into the wind. For her, it’s about mixing science with the technology of the art form. She must be aware of the engine’s size and power, distances, timing, and the mixing of certain colors. Watch the video below to see von Anhalt in action in one of her live Jet Art Demos!

Today we salute Princess Tarinan von Anhalt for her uncommon approach to using such a ubiquitous medium. We are appreciative of her unique style, her endurance to withstand the high speeds of the jet engines, and her willingness to get covered head to toe in paint!

Sources: List Verse, YouTube, Air Space Mag, NY Daily News