Books We Love: Contemporary Danish Illustration

A huge powder blue book on my table. So simple on the outside, and so filled with diverse imagery in the inside. "Contemporary Danish Illustration" is a visual journey through the universes of 32 Danish artists. And it's an interesting one. Throughout rich and beautifully reproduced illustrations and short, but thoughtful and reflective interviews we get an impression of these 32 talents – and most of all: We are keen to see more. 

The aim of the book is to show another, maybe parallel, path than the purely digital that has been dominating for a period in visual culture and illustration. All artists presented in the book work with analogue methods. They may also use digital tools – but the hand and the physicality are essential in their artistic practices. The return to a more manual and analogue approach is not explained as a counter movement towards the digital but rather as a revival of and a tribute to these analogue techniques. 

I couldn't agree more. The hand adds an unpredictability, an openness, a sensibility and a tactility that the smooth perfection of a digital surface never will or can. What interferes with the hand is exposed to the beautiful potential of something unplanned or accidental. Most of the illustrators in this beautiful overview do that – I would have loved even more of that "skewness" or "imperfection" or sense of the sender's hand. And I'm curious to see and read more.

Need I say, that my girls (3 + 6) love it too?

"Contemporary Danish Illustration" is a good and beautiful way to get acquainted with this group of young creatives and to obtain an overview of – at least a part of – the illustration tendencies. The book is curated and directed by the Danish design agency WAAITT and published by the Swedish-Norwegian publisher Arvinius + Orfeus. The text is in English.

Enjoy your reading – Inger Marie //

Illustrations by Anika Lori

Illustrations by Marie Boye Thomsen

llustrations by Trine Struwe

Illustrations by Camilla Bendix