FULL STOP. FULL STOP. COMMA, LINE – PAINTING IS A GAME WITH SIGNS
This book gives a unique insight into the life and work of the Norwegian artist Jørgen Dobloug (1945—2018). He lived for many years in Düsseldorf, where he started as a student of Joseph Beuys in 1971. This book has been produced as an extension of a two-part exhibition, shown at Vestfossen Art Centre. Prior to the first exhibition in 2013, Dobloug brought home to Norway the pictures he had in storage in Düsseldorf. Many of them not shown in Norway before. It was from this collection that Morten Viskum selected the pictures for the first exhibition. The following year, Mari F. Sundet curated a larger retrospective presentation of Dobloug. As with the exhibitions, the aim of this book is to bring Dobloug's art to a wider audience. We hope that this project will inspire others to look into Dobloug's artistic career, produce exhibitions and publications—and explore his art.
CATEGORIES: BOOK DESIGN, PHOTOGRAPHY, CREATIVE DIRECTION
CLIENT: VESTFOSSEN ART CENTRE
Design & creative direction: Nina Ansten
Context photography and documentation of artworks: Nina Ansten and Vegard Kleven
Editors: Mari F. Sundet, Hilde Mørch and Andrew J. Boyle
Texts: Per Hovdenakk, Mari F. Sundet and Morten Viskum.
English translations: Andrew J. Boyle
Print & Binding: RK Grafisk
Dobloug has a playful approach to art. His works are humorous, partly with contradictory elements in respect of both motive, composition and colours. His works span from strict geometric paintings including grid-patterns, to playful paintings executed with a rough, almost expressive, brush. There is furthermore a conceptual side to Dobloug's projects, that embraces reflection, attitude and resistance; a 'trinity' of values that the book seeks to explore and communicate.
The typography in the book is inspired by Dobloug's typographic studies, and the use of alphabet in his paintings. A motif that came to play a role throughout Dobloug's artistic career is the letter A. The letter can be seen as a starting point for his compositions. It is often depicted as a geometric sans-serif with a a distinctive personality, a feel that the font Neutraface resembles in this publication. Dobloug went to Basel to study under the Swiss design guru Armin Hoffman, in 1969. He later changed his path to study art at the Staatliche Kunstakademie Düsseldrorf (1971—78).
The cover of the book is inspired by the way Dobloug signs his paintings. His works are mainly acrylic paintings on canvas, and his signature is found on the back of the canvas. The book cover features Dobloug's signature, printed on embossed geltex—resembling the tactile feel of the canvas.
The design of the book emphasizes Dobloug’s expressive use of colour and brush strokes, filling the pages with vibrant, large scale reproduction of his work. As the paintings come in different sizes and colours, the margins of white space became an important tool for creating rhythm and representation of the energy in Dobloug's work.
‘…These small works, seem like painterly petri dishes – a concentrated place where the interplay of painting, brush, canvas and artistic will can be explored.’
–Mari F. Sundet (curator)