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Cogne & Dranger

To quote the artist Nina Bondesson, one of many popular guest lecturers at Graphic Design and Illustration (gdi) during the course of the year: ‘There’s no special reason to be in agreement on a view of art.’

Separation of one thing from another in the field of art can be a practical and sometimes necessary way of talking expertly about what we do. But equally as often this is motivated by far less noble agendas, such as safeguarding status and cultural capital – both highly valued currencies in the world of Swedish design and art.

The status-related sorting that seems to be the constant flip side of the changing concept of art has real consequences regarding jobs, grants, exhibition opportunities and future prospects.

So if we don’t like the dichotomies, can we change them? Yes of course. We are all free to do what we want! If as a student or teacher at Konstfack you sometimes forget this – and it can easily happen – you can look to the departing students at gdi, who are more than willing to show the way. 

Because just like last year, gdi’s departing students are doing what they feel like doing. Regardless of whether it leads them into the world of advertising or ludology, out onto the art arena, down into the black‑and‑white underworld of the comic strips or to the mystique of staged photography, the catwalk, the world of publishing, the short-film festival, the club scene, environmental activism – or into the depths of the meditating hut. We are hopeful and happy about the breadth and depth of this year’s final projects, and are proud to have been involved in them.

You’re doing what you want with impressive single-mindedness, self‑confidence and stubbornness. You’re doing what you want despite, or thanks to, doubts, critical looks and performance anxiety. You’re doing what you want, and the world and the art scene and the agencies and the papers and the music industry and the fashion mafia and the cultural editors and the world of publishing and capitalism and the cinema buffs and the comic‑strip nerds and the people on the other side of the globe will do best to take you seriously. 

It would appear in keeping to salute with a Super Mario quote:

‘Here we go!’

Hans Cogne, Professor of Graphic Design
Joanna Rubin Dranger, Professor of Illustration