The gallery and studio of Johan Potman and Mateo. Mainzerstr 21, Friedrichshain, Berlin.Somewhere between imagination and Berlin lies a special place called Zozoville. The doorway to this land of oddball under the bed monsters, devils and dysfunctionally cute can be found at Mainzer Strasse 12, Friedrichshain, Berlin. The only characters that you will find within approaching any possible sense of normality are Johan Potma and Mateo.

Some years ago when I was hawking my artistic wares on the Boxhagnerplatz flea market, myself and other artist friends found an abandoned American artist in a cardboard box on the market with his brushes and colours. Taking pity on the poor starving creature, we took him home to our corner of the market where we fed and watered him with our artistic comrade and the occasional coffee or morsel of food.

So it came to pass that Mateo was in our midst every Sunday. At some point later like a rabbit out of hat came Johan. We were not sure where he came from, but we were almost certain he was one of Mateo's magic tricks.

Thus began the creative partnership that was to evolve into the multi-eyed organism called Zozoville. Housed in a tiny shop front on the streets of urban cool that are Friedrichshain, this industrious pair founded their creative factory.

The Zozoville window is like some aliens come to earth and hiding behind a thin veneer of normality, but with an odd suspicious appendage popping out film. The sort of shop where you take a strange cute pet home, but not realising it is some ravenous beast from another world whose soul intent is to eat your geraniums. 

Johan and Mateo's endevours grow from strength to strength and people are starting to notice. In the past year they've had a run of media coverage, culminating with several TV interviews.

As I write this they are currently exhibiting their artwork in Paris. Their artwork is taking them to the corners of the unsuspecting world.


There goes the neighbourhood - Mateo The Ganitor - Johan Potma

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