Q&A with the Artist
We had an amazing opportunity to sit with the artist and get more in-depth about her experiences as a designer and illustrator and here thoughts on this project.
Read more from that interview below…
swissnex Boston: Can you tell us about yourself and your work?
Christina Baeriswyl: I originally studied visual communication here in Berne at the HKB. After my studies I worked for some years as an Art Director for classic advertising agencies in Zurich and Berlin. I was always interested in telling stories. I could do that in campaigns, and I liked working for the big brands. The work seen on TV and big billboards. But the flip side of working as an art director is that there is no space for your personal language.
The desire to develop my own personal language and to improve my drawing, made me start my own business 7 years ago. One task was to have a new position in the market. I wanted to be seen as an Illustrator and not as an art director. That worked out quite well and I can make my pictures for brands, newspapers and magazines. Mostly here in Switzerland. Sometimes for the Netherlands, Germany and the UK. And I try to get my work known in the States.
What inspires your work?
CB: Exciting stories and thoughts. They say that good stories only happen to those who can tell them. That’s why it doesn’t really matter to me what I’m supposed to do an illustration about. You only have to look at a fact, a story or an object and think about it until you discover the exciting or beautiful things in it. You can then make that visible in the illustration. That means everything can inspire me. A person, a thought, a color, a shadow, a story, music. But of course also artists. To understand how they see the world.
What interested you about our swissnex alumni stories project?
CB: They are exciting, sometimes complex, stories from people who are going their own way. I wanted to show the essence of the story in every picture. But the idea behind every piece of the series is to show the fact that life is a journey with many different ways. Standstill is not an option.
What lead you to making some of the artistic choices in these pieces (ie imagery and color palette)?
CB: They are different compositions but I was also looking for a language that could hold all 5 stories together. The single persons are always shown alone somewhere on their way. I have consciously avoided other people in the picture, so that the focus is on the individual person. Nevertheless, the pictures should not seem lonely, but powerful. I have chosen the colors in such a way that I get an aesthetic picture series. The colors are not lifelike, but this allows me to be more symbolic in my language.
If you had a magic wand and could make anything or work with anyone what would that look like?
CB: If I had a magic wand I would wish I could talk to an artist who inspired me a lot. That could be Louise Bourgeois, Felix Vallotton, Joan Sfar, or of course a multi-creative like David Bowie. Who I would choose depends on my day and mood.