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DAMNº 76 – On the politics of colour (cover 1)

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Colour is science and communication, but also entails perception and choice. Colour is fun and personal, but it can also become dangerously political. In this issue we explore some of the most colourful myths and realities – from naked cowboys riding pink unicorns to the corrupt power of the American greenback. We look at the latest exhibitions and talk to some of the artists and designers whose work dares us to recalibrate our thinking.
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DAMNº 76 – On the politics of colour (cover 1) | Bareback 2019

DAMNº 76 – On the politics of colour (cover 1) | Colour is science, psychology, and communication, but in art and design it is also about perception and choice. Colour is fun, packed with emotion, and is personal, but it can also become dangerously political. In DAMN° 76 we explore some of the most colourful myths and realities – from naked cowboys riding pink unicorns to the corrupt power of the American greenback – and get new insights into how the use of colour feeds and challenges our perceptions.

“What is fascinating about the color white is that there is a knee-jerk response to whether or not it even is a color, and that depends entirely upon the viewpoint of someone else, scientist or socialist. Hard or soft,” opines Earlwyn Covington.

Throughout this issue we look at the latest exhibitions and projects and talk to some of the artists and designers whose work dares us to recalibrate our thinking on the politics of colour – especially given the huge changes the digital revolution has introduced. We stop by Arita where the world’s most exquisite ceramics are being made, and visit Christien Meindertsma’s studio – one of the standouts of the current KleurEyck exhibition at the Design Museum Ghent – to hear how her research based projects are influencing the next generation of designers.

We also hear from Virgil Abloh on his love of pink: “My art education started with the Renaissance where I immediately drew parallels to now,” he says.  “Like the spread of information through the Internet today, a whole new cultural movement can be engaged, and so many people with diverse opportunity can find themselves at the root of a culture advancing forward. My practice today is about engaging within this new demographic where the world of art, fashion, and music can meet.”

And in stark contrast we see how one studio is communicating the core divisions that fuel the Online Culture Wars through the prism of black.

Everybody connects to colour so dive in and see how artists and designers are using their medium to challenge preconceptions through an alternate positioning of colour.

For the cover of this issue we have hit the pastures of fantasy with a painting by American artist Will Cotton, whose work is being exhibited at Brussels’ Galerie Templon. After all, who doesn’t love a cowboy on a unicorn? Cover 2 is a black and white image of a young girl looking to the side.

Cover 1: Bareback 2019 (Courtesy of Galerie Templon)

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