Wolf recently caught up with Malmö based graphic designer Daniel Christensen to talk art school in Belgium, projects with a passion and where graphic design fits into the growing public conversation on fascism ahead of the political elections in Sweden during September.
Using graphic design as a tool to express more than artistic talent, Daniel Christensen is using his finely tuned skills towards communicating a larger message, one that goes beyond the usual capitalistic based foundations of design and dares to invest in sustainable initiatives with a humanistic flare.
Collaborating with a start up company in Malmö who’s aim is to better service those less fortunate within the city, Daniel has been using his detailed illustrations and style to create a visual identity for the company that is organic in its disposition. Daniel is one of many in Malmö who have abandoned the traditional capitalist dream and are actively looking for the best way to coordinate what you love with a cause you believe in.
Daniel tells us more…
Graphic design from your perspective…
“For me, graphic design is always connected to something else, for example I have been studying abroad at LUCA school of arts in Gent, Belgium and there, graphic design is more like a platform for new methods and expression, and I like that – the art within graphic design. It´s nice to always look for new techniques and not get stuck with what you know.”
"Swedish graphic design has often been inspired from within Sweden, it's a little inbred, so a lot of people are out there trying to find other inspiration sources to create something new. I love to read, watch movies and join friends for unexpected events, and to travel when you have the opportunity. I think it´s important to expose yourself to new things, outside your "bubble" to come up with new things and get inspired.
Contemporary graphic design for me is always about something else or often has a starting-point somewhere else. I think graphic design needs to be a part of something bigger in order to make a difference… I started out with graffiti when I was 13 years old, and so I always have that influence in my process.”
Recent exhibition of ‘Anti-Facism’ piece in Minnesota, USA…
“They wanted a piece that was in your native language, and after the attacks in Malmö it felt very natural and important to highlight the attack abroad. They kept it for a day or two and then they put up something new, so its very contemporary in that sense, its kind of like graffiti – its really nice to think of graphic design as graffiti.”
Upcoming projects and things to get excited about…
"I’ve just started on a project with a company here in Malmö working with their visual identity. They’ve just started out and their aim is to pick up expired groceries from supermarkets, distribute the still edible food to primary schools and organizations. They then provide it to people who, for different reasons, are not able to supply themself with a decent meal.
In the future I hope to start my own studio in Malmö, it is the first place I have really felt at home in Sweden, but right now I’m looking for interesting jobs around the Öresund region. During my process I often have a socialistic approach to involve others and to improve interaction. I enjoy working with a sustainable perspective in my process and in the outcome of my work. I really hope that I will have the opportunity to continue to create in this way, at least to try to make a difference through my work."
Find more of Daniel’s work at danielchristensen.se
Wolf particularly loves the still life inspired illustrations from The Vegetable Project series.
Daniel’s ‘Anti-Fascism’ work among others can be seen at www.ficciones-typografika.tumblr.com, curated by Erik Brandt.