Jurryt Visser, The Pixel vs Vector MixMaster

Jurryt Visser is a young illustrator and designer from Friesland, The Netherlands. As a senior student of the Grafi Media Academy in Drachten, Jurryt has been creating graphic design since 2004. You can see his artworks at his website, a virtual portfolio of his commercial work and exhibition space for his personal projects. Jurryt uses about any medium or technique to express his ideas. One of the most recognizable features of his work is the mix of line art and photography into a seamless whole. His peculiar way of synthesizing pixel and vector, black/white plus color has already attracted the attention of the creative web community.

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Coca-Cola Pop Art Gallery: Micha Klein, Pioneer of the Digital Image Culture

Micha Klein graduated from the Rietveld Academy, Amsterdam, in 1989 as the first artist to receive a BA in computer graphics. The same year, Klein started exhibiting his gigantic photographic panels in prestigious galleries around the world.

Klein was already known as a successful VJ and experienced a breakthrough on the international club scene before he made it as an artist. Pioneer of the VJ-scene, Micha Klein introduced his rhythmic editing of computer graphics and video images at the first Acid house parties in 1988. In the nineties, he introduced the VJ concept in Ibiza, where he held a residency in legendary club Pacha. The rest of the world would follow fast. Over the years, Klein has seen how things have technically evolved and how the VJ-scene has boomed: “The new equipment and software create new possibilities. We live in a multimedia age, so we can’t live on music alone anymore. Visuals will become an integral part of electronic culture, and in the future DJ’s will become Media Jockey’s” (note: with this 90’s quote, Micha proved to be a real visionary – anno 2008, the age of the Media Jockey has begun with tools as the Pioneer SVM 1000).

In 1998, the Groninger Museum honored him with a retrospective dedicated to 10 years of his graphic production and videos. In 2003, Klein was honored with a Lifetime Achievement Award for his contribution to the international VJ scene during the AVIT UK summit.

Klein’s artworks are a significant crossover between art, multimedia, video art, VJing, marketing and advertising. They attract attention for their digital approach, surrealistic shapes & objects and bright colors and tell stories of a world that revisits pop art and culture. Klein doesn’t portray reality; he likes to create his own reality.
With his computer manipulated images and psychedelic computer palette, Klein explores the media based culture of our time. He mixes music, club culture, fashion, beauty and mass media to create a wondrous universe somewhere between dream and reality.

The people and landscapes in his artworks are just too beautiful & perfect. They appear unreal, even unearthly. In his series ‘Artificial Beauty’ (1998), Klein generated a new fictitious generation of beautiful young people, taking over the top the all too perfect beings and settings we encounter in advertisements.
By doing so, Klein also shows that today’s photography has no more to do with reality than other types of images. Even the most stunning models are given a Photoshop make-over. The end result is highly artificial, and comments on the aspects of society that Klein finds fascinating yet problematic such as artificial beauty and plastic surgery.

The aesthetics of advertising and elements of everyday and popular culture have always been an integrated element Klein’s art, and he brings everything that is usable over from this world. In true pop art tradition, Micha Klein is a big but critical fan of the techniques and concepts of advertising. Just like Damien Hirst, Klein believes that art must compete with commercial and spectacular expressions: “My work must be as seductive as advertising and entertainment. If not, it loses its visibility in a culture saturated by media, constantly bombarding us with commercial messages. Since these messages have become part of the mainstream culture, it is vital that artists especially can infiltrate this culture with their subversive ideas.”

Over the last years, Micha Klein has worked in clubs around the world and collaborated with superstar DJ Tiësto on visuals for his live-sets and created background projections for Eminem’s concert tour, based on his notorious character Pillman. Klein also did all the artworks for the Dutch dance festival Mysteryland, designed the animations for Jacky Chan’s ‘Around the World in Eighty Days’ movie and did commercial work for companies and brands as Swatch, Philips, Endemol, KPN, Mustang Jeans, Heineken, Hugo Boss and Samsung.

For his first Coca-Cola commercial, Micha Klein managed to put in a girl in a ‘Make Love, Not War’ T-shirt (just before the 2nd Gulf war), a boy wearing a Che Guevara T-shirt the war and girls licking each others faces. The video with music by Monte La Rue, introducing Coca-Cola’s new visual identity by Desgrippes Gobé, was sold to 25 Coca-Cola markets, a lot in Central and South America.

Klein’s commercial jobs and his works of art have a number of parallels in form & content: “It’s fun to stretch the image of a company in directions they never would imagine, to sort of pile your own layer of meaning on top of theirs, to inject some of my own ideas”.
Klein always tries to inject some of his own ideas in his commercial work. “I try to talk to the client and tell them they should transform their strategy to become a ‘good company’, to be closer to their consumers and do community projects. Give back to the people… I think in the future companies will be judged on that”.
By doing commercial assignments, Klein can finance his own art, and is not dependent on government subsidies, which gives him more freedom.

The music & club culture is still a key component in Klein’s work; at times he prefers the unceremonious gathering at clubs to the seriousness of galleries or museums.
For the Coca-Cola commercial “Bubble Dream Girl”, Klein could combine his passion for dance floors and advertising. The clip was shot in Malaga on 35mm, with a 50 people crew and 80 extras. Graphics & special effects were added in post production and his friend Tiësto did the soundtrack.

Last year (2007), ‘Speeding on the Virtual Highway’, a documentary about Micha Klein’s life & work was shown at the International Documentary Film Festival Amsterdam. Director Corinne van Egeraat follows Klein as he works on his his new art series. This unique time document shows us how fast digital developments go and how quickly the times they are a-changin’, especially in the case of Klein’s creative way of living.

Coca-Cola Pin-Up Fun in the Summer Sun

While temperature is falling in big parts of the world, people from Oceanian countries are welcoming the warm weather and planning their perfect summer.
Summer is a perfect time to have fun & relax. Go down to the beach with some friends, have a BBQ, drive around in a convertible, take a sunbath, swim & surf or crash a pool party.

Last year, Coca-Cola New Zealand promoted “Summer As It Should Be” with a series of modern pin-up prints, featuring local bikini beauties ready to dive into surf and sand with their board-size bottles of Coke.

Gil Elvgren, Top Image-Maker & Pin-Up Glamour Master

Born in 1914 in St. Paul, Minnesota, Gil Elvgren was a master painter and one of America’s first and best loved pin-up artists. He is possibly the foremost painter of sensuality through using models who possess a ‘girl-next-door’ quality. His heroines are often caught in humorous situations that cause their skirts to rise and our eyes to follow. His paintings are an excellent proof of the phrase, “A picture is worth one thousand words.”

Elvgren commenced studies at the Minneapolis Art Institute, and later studied (and even taught) at the Chicago Academy of Art. His parents first encouraged him to study architecture, but shortly after starting his studies he decided to pursue art instead. Some of Gil’s fellow students were Al Buell, Andrew Loomis, Coby Whitmore, Robert Skemp and Ben Stahl. Many of his academy friends would later also work for Coca Cola.

Elvgren graduated from the Academy during the depression at the age of twenty-two. Elvgren first job was one for one of the major US advertising agencies, Stevens and Gross. One of their most exciting clients was Coca-Cola. Elvgren contributed to several Coca-Cola ads. No artist working for Coke could sign his work, but Elvgren’s hand & style remain very recognizable.

Elvgren’s work also mirrors the sheer, nostalgic revery that the breathtaking illustrations of Haddon Sundblom’s “Coca-Cola” Santa’s evoke. No wonder, as Elvgren quickly became a protégé of the legendary Sundblom. The old master taught his star pupil the lush brush stroke technique that makes Elvgren’s girls such glowing wonders.

Elvgren conveys the ideal of real life, fun, beauty and sensuality in every of his paintings. Never sexual, always sensual, their style is the epitome of the age of elegance in which he lived.
He spent extreme amounts of time posing the models for the pre-painting photograph. Elvgren always looked for models with vitality and personality, and chose young girls who were new to the modeling business. He felt the ideal pin-up was a 15 year old face on a 20 year old body. In some cases, he combined the body of one girl and the face of another to achieve the desired result.

In 1937, Gil began painting calendar pin-ups for Louis Dow, one of America’s leading publishing companies. These artworks are easily recognizable because they are signed with a printed version of Elvgren’s name, as opposed to his later cursive signature. Dow paintings were often published first in one format, then painted over with different clothes and situations.

Around 1944, Gil was approached by Brown and Bigelow, a firm that still dominates the field in producing calendars and advertising specialties. They offered him $1000 per pin-up, which was substantially more than Dow was paying him. Elvgren signed on with B&B. Gil’s Brown and Bigelow images all contain his cursive signature. Elvgren painted twenty calendar girls each year, ranging from the girl next door letting her dog out, to brave rodeo heroines & water skiing action girls.

Besides a successful career in advertising, Gil Elvgren also did a lot of magazine illustrations. His pretty girls also appeared on many billboards, the same image sometimes modified a bit to sell more than one type of product.

According to Elvgren author & art collector Louis Meisel: “Between the mid-1930s and early 70s, Elvgren produced over 500 paintings of beautiful girls and women. As the decades progressed, the paintings just kept getting better and better. Elvgren continually surpassed himself, always improving in composition, ideas, color and technique.”

The beautiful Elvgren girls are never portrayed as a femme fatale. They are stylized ideals in which the realities and essentials of female form and expression are heightened and exalted artistically. Their charms are revealed in that fleeting instant when she’s been caught unaware in what might be a surprising, sometimes even embarrassing situation. She is intruded upon as she takes a bath. Her skirts get caught in elevator doors, hung up on faucets, and entangled with dog leashes. The elements conspire in divesting her of her clothing. The Elvgren girls, pictured in a variety of fun and clever contexts, are life-affirmative art of the highest order.

Elvgren died in 1980, at the age of 66. Lately, there’s a resurgent interest in his work and prints of his pictures are still bestsellers. Today, Elvgren is recognized as one of the top image makers & glamour artists of the 20th century.

The Coke Side of Dublin

What do James Joyce, WB Yeats, Oscar Wilde, Jonathan Swift and George Bernard Shaw all have in common? Apart from their literary talent, they all hailed from the same city, Dublin – home to writers and Ireland’s largest city.
Situated near the midpoint of Ireland’s east coast, at the mouth of the River Liffey, Dublin has been Ireland’s capital since the Middle Ages.

Today, Dublin is the 3rd most visited capital in Europe. A city trip to this ancient Viking settlement allows you to explore both the historical and the hip, from castles and churches to pubs and clubs, its arts and vibrant culture, its energy and buzz. The vibrant city life brims with traditional Irish culture and trendy European cool, all set against the backdrop of its stunning coastline.
Thanks to the economic upsurge of past decade, Dublin has also grown into a true shopping & strolling paradise. Bustling street markets, ethnic cuisines and fashion shops full of designer labels have all contributed to Dublin’s newfound trendy status.

“Coke Side of Dublin” poster by Eboy.
Svend Smital, Steffen Sauerteig and Kai Vermehr founded Eboy in 1998 as a channel to explore their shared interest in pixel graphics. Ten years later, the Eboy collective is still alive and kickin’ at the forefront of the pixel art movement.

Sometimes grey weather, but always a laugh.
Photography by Kyrstin Ní Éalaithe. All rights reserved.


Coca-Cola Urban Art in the streets of Dublin.

Coca-Cola Hungary – 40 Years of Happy Moments Expo

Forty years ago, Coca-Cola came to Hungary. In 1968, Coke was the first American product that made it through the Iron Curtain. To commemorate this occasion, Coca-Cola unfurled a collection of vintage pictures of “Happy Hungarians”.


“The purpose of our life is to be happy” – Dalai Lama


“Happiness in a bottle”


“Love is doing small things with great love” – Mother Teresa

Blow-up of the limited edition Coca-Cola Sziget Festival bottle, designed by the Hungarian artist Slow


Coca-Cola Art Bottles Installation


Coca-Cola Art Bottles Installation


Coca-Cola Art Bottles Installation


Coca-Cola Art Bottles Installation

Coca-Cola’s “Happy Moments” installation is part of the “Happiness Exhibition” by ARC Magazin. There are 62 original Happiness billboards and slogans plus 36 cultural posters; mind blowing work by Hungary’s most creative minds.

In 1846, the Hungarian poet Sándor Petőfi already came to the conclusion that the only happiness which is available to mankind is love: “The heart freezes if it doesn’t love”.
121 years later, John Lennon wrote “All you need is love”, a simple message to be understood by people from all over the globe.


One of the 62 billboards, showing Hungarians raising the flag of joy


This billboard reflects on the “stock market of life”


Things that make us happy (Boldogság is the Hungarian word for happiness)


Another “Happiness” billboard. A recent study shows that a smile motivated by real happiness is likely to inspire others to smile


A side exhibition showing a selection of this years cultural posters

You can visit the ARC Happiness Exhibition and Coca-Cola’s “40 Years of Happy Moments” expo at 56-osok Tere (just next to Heroes Square), Budapest, Hungary from August 28 -September 16, 2008. Entrance is free.

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