The pictured project, Beauty is the Beast goes a long way to neatly summarise the work of Simon Wald-Lasowski. A mix of phallic, funny, colourful thoughts and feelings. There seems to be a depth to the lightheartedness though, and who better to stem my intrigue than the man himself…
Hey Simon, hope you’ve had a good holiday. It seems lots of your work is pretty laid back and fun – is that what you’re like as a person as well as designer?
Hello Alex, thank’s for your interest. My friends would probably say that I’m as colourful as my work. Anyhow, I take fun seriously in my search for the perfect “witty spontaneous” image.
Can you tell us a little about your practice, and how you’d describe your work?
I graduated from the Gerrit Rietveld Academie in 2004 as a graphic designer. It’s an amazing school which definitely had a strong influence on my practice. I mostly work on applied projects but I try to approach each subject, as varied as it may be, with the same personal and ironic touch. This makes it therefore sometimes difficult to differentiate my applied work from my self initiated work.
Some of my images are just lucky discoveries, but most of them are based on ideas. I try to create simple, catchy, entertaining work that could appeal to children, but that could also be interpreted on different levels. Somehow people love to categorise, and graphic designers mostly see me as a photographer, while photographers see me as a designer, but that doesn’t bother me too much anymore.
Were there any tutors of workshops in particular that helped out out in particular at Rietveld?
As in most art schools, I guess you learn as much from the other students as you do from the teachers. And I am proud to say that some of my Rietveld friends became some of my favourite artists. But the tutors were really great! Most of them were quite young and working as designers. I was taught among others by Will Holder, Stuart Bailey, and Jop van Bennekom. But Experimental Jetset and Linda van Deursen were the ones that inspired me the most.
What’s your ideal commission?
A photographer I know was recently send to New York for a few weeks to make free work based on a theme. Right now that would be my ideal commission. Being send abroad with some given boundaries and having the result printed or exhibited.
What can we expect to see from you in 2010?
Hopefully more free work. Having my site online gives me a platform to make personal work which wouldn’t have had a context otherwise. I also feel ready to leave my colourful studio backgrounds behind to make images in more complex and absurd settings. And I’d love to make a music video…