Kalle Mattsson

SELF-PORTRAITKalle grew up in Sweden, back when Sweden still only had two TV channels and was run by the left. Early on his father showed him how to draw nipples on the letter D when writing. This was Kalles first step towards graphic design, type design and conceptual illustration. Comics came along, superheroes were drawn and anatomy was studied. Nirvana made everyone Kalle knew buy a guitar and start a band, including himself. People started needing artwork for their demo cassettes and Kalle started making them.

Right about there things essentially stopped changing for Kalle. The formula was fitting. Having a band and deciding how things look became the two motors that propelled Kalle through his life. Sure, he studied painting, drawing, printmaking, graphic design, typedesign, went to the Rietveld Academie in Amsterdam to study graphic design, lived and worked nine years in Holland, made work parallell for banks and punk bands, explored every inch of the creative map, had exhibitions, fell in and out of love like people do, but in essence it remained the same deal to this day.

At some point the illustration had given way to graphic design, though. This was probably Hollands fault with it’s massive design heritage. And when Kalle moved back to Sweden, the itch had to be properly scratched again. Since he had worked both as an art director and graphic designer for several years in Holland, he had learned not only to make images, but also to use them. He knew what he loved, and he could analyse what a project needed. This made for a three way dialogue inside Kalles mind, which gave fruit in the form of the way Kalle now makes illustration. It is the merging of independent comics, modernism, hieroglyphs, advertising and dance.