Jessica Svensden smashes expectation and tradition

A recent graduate from Yale School of Art, Jessica Svensden’s portfolio is remarkable in its boundless extrusion of image and iconoclastic elasticity of minimalist principle.

Her Zabriskie Point project in particular is a reactionary exploration, rather than a defined brief, to the displaying of archival books from the Beinecke Rare Book & Manuscript Library and Haas Arts Library.

“Both libraries require books and papers to be propped in two angled blocks while in the reading room,” explains Svensden. “These blocks require readers to see rare books at an angled, distorted perspective. Books cannot lay flat as they would outside the archive.”

By photographing the angles of the books, Svensden proposed an identity that attempted to capture the dimensionality of the original object, arranged within a constrained context. Digitally cut and pasted into collage, the finished images brightly announce that these old books also have a life and presence as an object, or a piece of sculpture.

“The layered collages not only create a false depth, but also suggest movement, as if these prints were stills of valuable books exploding, rotating, and falling in mid-air.” said Svensden.

Now a designer at Pentagram, Svensden works under Michael Bierut.

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