On behalf of the IWC I would like to thank you for your excellent presentation on Wednesday. 
Those that attended found it to be enjoyable, thought provoking and stimulating.
From my own personal point it has roused an interest in art which I hope to continue to develop in the future.

A. H, Switzerland


Your presentation yesterday was such a success - you got people thinking and talking as well as appreciating.

Thank you so much for giving so generously of your time and sharing so much of the background that pertained to your projects. I am so glad that your books also proved popular.

M.E, Switzerland


At last I’m finding a quick moment to drop you a line to thank you for your very interesting talk in Pully recently.  I enjoyed it so much, as I know all of the other ladies did.

I loved your colours and the inspiration you get from listening to that beautiful music - which really brings your paintings alive - thank you so much.  I now look forward, after all the end of year festivities to sitting down quietly and looking at the book I bought at the talk.  I really want to be able to take it all in.

S. S.Switzerland


I love your refreshing artworks.
All are beautiful renditions and combinations of brilliant colors and generous brush strokes.
ALSO love the large mural.
All of them are special. 
I am listening to Rachmaninoff's 2nd while gazing at your creations.
What a joy modern technology is.
As the Chinese say 'We live in interesting times!


Es gibt Bücher, von denen ganze Familien begeistert sind -und Bücher mit multikulturellem Inhalt, wie dieses Buch:Grundlage und Ausgangspunkt sind hier Gemälde der Künstlerin DESSA.Ihre Arbeiten entstehen unmittelbar beim Hören ausgesuchterMusikstücke von Benjamin Britten.Abgerundet wird das Gesamtwerk durch den Text der Gesprächezwischen DESSA und Gaby Sohl sowie Frank Harders-Wuthonow.Mir gefallen diese umfangreichen  Ergänzungen zu den Bildern,in denen immer wieder Neues  zu entdecken ist. DESSA hat ihreeigene künstlerische Handschrift gefunden.
Darum liegt das Buch seit Monaten auf meinem Schreibtisch.


"It was so nice to meet you and to watch your Britten exhibition in Berlin. Your paintings are so vivid, colorful and delightful. They gave me big energy. I, as a person who got disease, would like to put all of them surrounding me for getting fresh power against the disease".

Masaki T., Japan

Ayant mentionné votre nom d'artiste, je suis allée voir votre site... Que de couleurs, de puissance et de passion. C'est superbe.

M. L. (Suisse)

Ich bin ganz hingerissen von den See- und Brittenbildern!! 
Dr Norbert Abels Chefdramaturg Oper Frankfurt

J'ai beaucoup aimé vos magnifiques collages si humains et vivants surtout sur les partitions de musique. Vos peintures abstraites m'emportent loin et en même temps me rejoignent au plus profond de moi. Il y a 10 ans j'ai rarement, pour ainsi dire jamais ressenti de telles émotions devant des peintures...j'ai été simplement bouleversée par cette exposition sur Victor Ullmann et vos peintures.

Pour moi votre invitation a été un véritable signe du destin, peindre est pour moi un second souffle et vous m'inspirez beaucoup. J'aimerais un jour avoir la beauté et la chance de provoquer chez une personne l'émotion ressentie lors de ma vision sur vos tableaux...

F. C  Lausanne


Not being a musician myself, (altho’ I did take piano and music theory for a time) I do not “hear” music when I see musical notation.  I imagine that a musician would unconsciously process the sight of notation into a sound or musical dimension. So your perception of the scores is very illuminating to me. 

It is as one artist looking at another, and understanding perfectly the other’s medium in it’s REPRESENTATIONAL as well as it’s vibrational aspects.  The power of the mind to encompass in a trice the manifestation and symbolic meaning of visual matter, and then re-present it into the reality and experience of the receiver is extraordinary.  To draw attention to it through the process of presentation adds another layer of awareness in both doer and receiver.

Some of the collages work for me, at this level, and others I find flatter and more decorative than deeply compelling.  Again, I think this is because I am musically “blind” and another type of viewer, one who is deeper into your multiple sensibilities, will receive it differentlly.

What comes across is a defining focus to both your Self and your work. I should have liked to know which paintings were done to what music.

The dimension of Time coming to the forefront is most contemporary.  More and more there is multitasking -- things being responded to immediately -- texted, engraved, sent to a receiver or multiple receives, both known and unknown, present or distant.  Immersing these older or elite art forms in the dimension or “process” of immediacy and outward communication is bringing them into the 21st Century, making them part of “what’s happening” in an aesthetic that is accessible to the people of today.

Your relationship to time, which comes through as a narrative in the music, and within yourself, comes through also as a narrative in the painting.    The painting is the end product, or “repository” of the work that time has wrought.  It is time made visible.  I like that.

The paintings - stand alone without the music.  Which reaches a larger audience.   They are visceral and yes, full of movement.  The energy and deep psychic appeal of colour, line, perspective and brush stroke engage one, and the compositions hold the eye and through it the emotions.


C. D. (USA)

...An easy jet flight back to London from Berlin on 26 January 2010 granted me the most wonderful experience of my life. I sat next to a well dressed affluent looking lady of an official standing who replied “an artist “ to my question of what do you do for a living?. If I am ever asked what drew me so deep down to the works of Dessa, my answer is her answer to my second question. I asked her what projects do you do, as I was trying to be polite and show some interest in her already a few times mentioned word “ project”. Her reply was; “ I will give you my website, you can go and see”, that was it. The way she said it told me everything about her. I knew I was wrong, my first initial stereotyped judgmental reaction to her job being an artist was wrong. She was not just yet another artist!. Having realised my mistaken thoughts the panic was now setting in, whilst she was visiting the toilets I was thinking in my head, what if she forgets to give me the address, how am I going to ask her if she did forget. Would it be polite to ask? Wont I look like a pushover? Before I knew it she was back and continued with the conversation and reading my mind inside out, wrote the address on my offered piece of paper and I knew I am going to keep this slender handwritten address forever.
I entered the site as soon as I got home, dropped down menu for art projects, Turangalila, Viktor Ullmann, N.Israel etc. Yes the smart looking lady that I met in the plane is the mothercreator of all these works. It was not the first time that I would stare at expressionist work, interpreting or creating my own meaning of shapes or images. This one was different. They were not allowing me to interpret them; they were coming at me, injecting ecstasy shots into my blood stream. They were not just cheerful bright open vast blue and white colours. This pretty petite fellow passenger of mine must possess some power of hypnotism apart from other skills listed on her site, powers I had noticed during that less than an hour flight conversation with her. I remembered our conversation on the effects and side effects of small doses of pills to help cure chemical imbalances associated with depression. These paintings were injecting me with a large dosage of whatever those pills could pour into the blood!
Her paintings have definitely cured my depressive side and like all other drugs I am now paying the price for having committed myself to the first prescription. I am now officially addicted and I know I will remain alike for the rest of my life. I spent days pushing “next” and “previous” buttons on the website looking at each one God knows how many times. I wanted to select my favourite; I had to make a painful decision. I was in such agony to choose one of Dessa’s creations among those shown on her website, which are only a small part of her work. I made my choice, and the last one of the Viktor Ullmann’s collection is the one that I am saving my pennies for. Each time I look at those paintings on the website, which is now everyday, I feel guilty about my choice. The battle of roses in my head runs yet another episode, ending with the same result.
You never know what’s round the corner; if I ever win the lottery I know where to invest my money. (UK)

I am a graduate student at the University of Alberta in Edmonton, Canada, and I am doing a master's degree in Piano, and am planning to pursue a PhD in musicology. For my thesis project I am doing a lecture recital using Viktor Ullmann's Seventh Piano Sonata as my focal point. I came across your website as I was putting together my bibliography last year and was quite inspired by your art, as it's very vibrant and alive, while most people want to put a dark spin on Ullmann's music. I am planning to focus on the ways in which Ullman draws the humanity out of the situation he was in and creates a unifying element - the joining of the Hebrew, German and Czech melodies in the final movement being the most obvious. 

I was wondering if I could use your artwork in my presentation, possibly as a design element in my PowerPoint presentation and in my posters announcing the recital? Like I mentioned, I was quite moved by the vibrancy and creativity of your work and I think it will really complement the mood and atmosphere I would like to present. I also think it would be really neat to show that there is interest in Ullmann in the greater artistic community. Please let me know your thoughts. 
J.D (Canada)

...I was particularly touched by your “Tribute to Kaufhaus N. Israel.” The story you tell of discovering the N. Israel album in a Berlin bookstore reverberated with me and reminded me of a story of my own. When I embarked on researching Viennese pre-war art collectors about fifteen years ago, I was most shocked at the extent to which the memory of these individuals had been completely erased from the city to which they had contributed so greatly. The most poignant example of this, at the time, was when I discovered the Rothberger family, who owned an enormous and very modern department store on Stephansplatz, just opposite the cathedral—the very finest address in Vienna. Everybody shopped at Rothbergers (they were even open 24hrs!), but nobody remembered it some sixty years later.
I feel that you in art, and I in history are both so clearly devoted to keeping alive memory. I am sorry that it has taken me so long to say this. (Austria)

...Bravo pour l'oeuvre des collages. Je les ai visionné et je trouve vraiment splendide. (Suisse)

...A Tribute to Kaufhaus N. Israel arrived to-day und ich habe es einfach "verschlungen"! I cannot praise your work enough. It must indeed have cost you not only many hours but a great deal of thought. The amount of research you did is nothing short of amazing and your collages are truly works of art. I shall always relish it and cannot thank you enough for your thoughtfulness. It was also highly educational. (USA)

Je vous remercie infiniment pour l’envoi de votre très beau livre inspiré par la Seconde Symphonie (orchestration de la Septième Sonate pour piano) de Viktor Ullmann ainsi que du catalogue de votre exposition de 1992 Turangalîla, inspirée par l’oeuvre de Messiaen. Quelle coïncidence ! L’année précédente, j’avais entrepris avec le compositeur l’édition de la version révisée de l’oeuvre. Lorsque chez Frank, j’ai regardé le livre que vous avez consacré à Ullmann, j’ai été immédiatement touché par votre démarche, résonance picturale à une musique que le temps semblait avoir à jamais et bien injustement, englouti dans l’oubli. Le rapport peinture-musique n’est pas envisagé ici dans le registre structurel mais dans la sphère de l’émotion. Les couleurs, les gestes, les formes (je ne sais dans quel ordre) naissent de l’impulsion donnée par la musique. André Suarès avait écrit un jour “ La couleur est l’espèce visuelle de la musique ”. On sait que Messiaen était très sensible à cette correspondance, jusqu’à l’éprouver dans son expérience sensorielle. Il connaissait en effet ce curieux dérèglement des sens qu’on appelle synopsie, ou synesthésie, dérèglement des nerfs optique et auditif permettant de voir des couleurs en entendant des sons. Il avait d’ailleurs connu ces états hallucinatoires lorsqu’il souffrait de froid et de faim lors de sa captivité en Allemagne. Messiaen établit souvent dans la dimension harmonique de son discours musical une corrélation entre les accords et les couleurs. Son dernier ouvrage théorique, le monumental Traité de rythme, de couleurs et d’ornithologie, en sept volumes, est là pour nous en convaincre. (France)

I think we should give you an "Israel" award for all the good pioneer work you are doing. With your talent, I hope you also get well awarded besides the personal satisfaction it must give you. (USA)

Ihre Adresse entnahm ich aus Ihrem Katalog " A Tribut To N. Israel 1815-1939 ". Der Katalog ist ursprunglich von ihrer Bekannte ILANA an mich weitergeleitet. Ich leite den Archiv im "Museum der deutschsprechenden Juden" im Tefen, Israel. Wilfried Israel ist, zwischen viele andere, im Museum dokumentiert. So mehr habe ich mit grossen Interesse Ihren Katalog gelesen. Sie haben meine Kenntnisse über die Familie Israel erweitert, dafür möchte ich mich bei Ihnen herzlich bedanken. Sie haben eine grossartige Arbeit geleistet, die Kollagen sind sehr interessant und informationsreich.Den Katalog werde ich zum Archivakten von Wilfried Israel legen. (Israel)

Thank you so much for sending us the catalogues of your work. Sue and I have really enjoyed reading them, following the stories of their creation and above all seeing the art works themselves. They express so much energy and passion - such colours and such combinations. We thought that all of what you have done is really tremendous. It's gives so many dimensions to the work to have the history behind the inspirations as well as your own commentary on the artistic processes you experienced. But the most important experience is the work itself. Even in photographs the paintings and collages are so vivid, engaging and moving. They clearly express so much of you and your response to the music of Viktor Ullmann, the Kaufhaus and landscape. (UK)

...the Mahler pictures! They are full of lively imagination, rugged melodies (like his...) and a truly sonorous despair. Bravo! Congratulations. (Sweden)

J'admire beaucoup votre peinture et j'aimerais bien d'approfondir sa connaissance. Les ensembles des couleurs dans votre travaux avec la dominante du violet, comme vous dites, je pense, aurait pu etre proche a Maitre Messiaen personellement. Mais aussi une certaine "dynamisme", les couleurs en mouvements, c'est aussi ces sont les dimensions paraleles a la recherche du Maitre. Il avait relatione toujours que les couleurs ne sont jamais arretes et mortes, mais ils sont en perpetuels (ou infernales) mis-en-mouvements sans arret.
Vous etes, Chere Madame, plus en futur et en avenir dans votre recherches et dans votre poetique guidant vers le chemin creative envers Olivier Messiaen. Mais a mon avis vous etes aussi pas tres loin de la position de ce celebre Blanc Gatti, ce peintre suisse qui a touche tellement encore jeune Messiaen, par sa propre realisation en peinture de sa musique d'orgue ("Nativite du Seigneur"). Avec toute mon admiration. (Poland)

It was lovely talking with you and I was very intrigued by your web site. Your work is beautiful. (USA)

<p>I am very pleased to be introduced by Ly-Won. Though I haven't met you  while in Geneva, your website explains about you very well. I found you  have had very diversified experiences in several countries and in  several cultures. Very interesting! Like you, my life has also been  different from other typical Koreans; influenced by multi-cultures.  (Korea)</p>

...after long travels I went back to Berlin, and a week ago Frank gave me your really wonderful book “Composition”, saying that there is another (bigger) gift for me waiting in the Lützowstrasse! Thank you very very much for this, I’m deeply moved, and I cannot stop to look to your paintings... it is unbelievable how you went in my own fantasies and how you felt my music. I hope very much to see all pictures together in an exhibition, as we planned it – with music it would be so great...! Detlev Glanert, Berlin

And want to say again how much I respond to the work… I’m turning the pages at this very moment and am very affected by them emotionally. And dazzled, in many cases, by the colours. Though I know, ideally, the paintings and music on which they’re built should be taken in together, my spirit soars when I’m exposed to colour and very much so in the way you’ve used it in this particular project. And your own explanatory piece, Dessa - Melody of Colour – is wonderfully explicit, the precise language you choose giving a really rewarding insight into the eye/ear connection and evolution of your work. Terrific! T.L (London)

I just watched the DVD, which is amazing! congratulations!!
I really much appreciated that you didn't double the music but you had your own concept coherent in form and colour and in the frames of your own compositional setting you reacted to the music (for instant when the red comes in it reacts to the music but gives also a new formal aspect to the music, as a conclusive last form part.
Also the evolution from groundy colours to more excessiv colours I really much appreciated (the first minutes are beautifully callygraphic and introspective
And I was pleased you just reacted exclusivly to some part of the instrumentation in the more rhythmical pulsations as to the celesta, this also gives an extra contrepoint and emphasis of part of the musical constraction.
I find it a beautiful mixture between freedom and concept also the change between the "action painting" aspects (I meen where the body is moving in the rhythm) and the parts where you listen to the music and according to the form (which is also kind of a slow rhythm) paint some elements are very well chosen (this creates an extra form like a ballet).
R.K. (Basel) (on the film DVD « Musiques et pinceaux » concert/live painting)

...Inzwischen habe ich auch bereits auf Ihre Homepage geschaut und einiges über Ihre Arbeit, speziell in Berlin, erfahren. Ich bin sehr beeindruckt und würde mich über Hinweise auf nächste Ausstellungen sehr freuen. M.S. Berlin