PREPARE FOR PICTOPIA
Pictoplasma Publishing & Haus der Kulturen der Welt, Berlin
Edited by Peter Thaler and Lars Denicke, Bernd M. Scherer
Pages: 328 pages, fully coloured
Format: 18,4 x 22,3 cm / 7.24 x 8.78 in
Published: May 2009
All you’ll ever need to know about contemporary character design and art on 328 colourful pages. Prepare for Pictopia is the first ever in depth publication to assemble theoretical texts and selected works by international artists, designers and authors, all investigating the aesthetic principle of reduction and abstraction in the design of anthropomorphic characters.
Published on the occasion of the Pictopia exhibition at the renown Haus der Kulturen der Welt in spring 2009, the book examines and reflects upon the recent phenomena of character design, presenting original artworks and new installations by more than 30 contemporary artists. While making the diversity in the artistic strategies visible, the various works employ a common visual vocabulary of archetypal forms and pop-cultural icons, reconfiguring these into startling combinations. 15 original essays by scholars and critics from such diverse domains as philosophy, robotics, cultural history, psychoanalysis, or design theory analyse the theoretical implications and archetypical roots of the contemporary character vague.
With artworks by: FriendsWithYou, Olaf Breuning, Mark Ryden, Shoboshobo, Gary Baseman, Tim Biskup, Doma Collective, Motomichi Nakamura, Boris Hoppek, Ben Frost, Edwina Ashton, Akinori Oishi, AJ Fosik, Fons Schiedon, James Marshall, Wayne Horse, Faiyaz Jafri, Doudouboy, and many more
Featuring original essays by Kirsten Anderson, Philipp Czogalla & Daniel S. Ribeiro, Brian R. Duffy, John Emigh, Jochen Gros, Terry Harpold, Gregor Jansen, Thomas Macho, Lev Manovich, Anneleen Masschelein, Paul McCarthy, Kristóf Nyíri, Woodrow Phoenix, Peter Schneider, Wolfgang Ullrich
“Will we one day remember 2009 as the year we first made contact? Pictopia scores with a selection on the border of art and design. It tickles the figures to unravel their horror, grotesque and pathos.”
“There is no Utopia – the dolls, masks and grotesque faces can just help to make the dark secret of globalisation visible.”
“Pictopia explores character design as a fresh, appealing art form that opens a window to another world: a realm of images populated by characters people can relate to and identify with, thanks to their minimalist, basic shapes and their references to universally-shared pop culture.”