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Bjørn Wiinblad was one of Denmark's most talented artists, and became world famous for his imaginative drawings and decorations filled with romantic girls, legendary figures, and wonderful patterns. But before he could unleash himself as an artist, he had to attend the Technical College in Frederiksberg from 1936 to 1939, and also held an apprenticeship as a typographer during the same period.
He had told his father that he wanted to be an artist, but his father insisted that he first pursue an education that would ensure him a fixed monthly salary. Bjørn Wiinblad therefore began his studies in typography in 1935 and, although he understood the sense in learning proper craftsmanship, he did not fit into the typography environment particularly well.
However, in 1940, Wiinblad became a newly qualified typographer, and had he followed the usual path, he would soon have found himself a job as a printer or compositor at a newspaper. But Bjørn Wiinblad wasn't someone who followed the beaten track. Naturally, he also couldn't let go of the idea of working within art – and preferably as an illustrator. Therefore, that same year, he began studying at the graphics college at the Royal Danish Academy of Fine Arts, under Professor Aksel Jørgensen. Here, Bjørn Wiinblad initially embraced his professor’s stringent graphical style.
However, Bjørn Wiinblad soon began looking for a place where he could fully unfold. Where he could lose himself in his imagination, and draw elf-like figures, women with almond eyes, and beautiful flowers. He found the answer in ceramics, which fellow student Lars Syberg introduced him to in 1943. It turned out to be the right thing to do. When Wiinblad wasn't studying at the Academy of Fine Arts, he was unleashing his creativity in Lars Syberg’s workshop.
Bjørn Wiinblad could neither twist nor shape the ceramic, but he could decorate it and was particularly enthusiastic about working with the old cow horn technique, in which you fill a cow's horn with color and apply it to a pot or dish. This gives a particularly fine line and requires a steady hand. The smile, the nose, the eyes. Today, virtually everyone is familiar with Bjørn Wiinblad’s lines – full of character and easy to recognize across materials.
Regardless of the design, product and range, his design style is a unique beacon of Danish design. And it was especially the meeting with the artistic manager of the small Nymølle earthenware factory, Jacob E. Bang, that really kicked off Bjørn Wiinblad’s artistic career. A wealth of plates, bowls, cups, dishes, ashtrays, and candleholders with Bjørn Wiinblad’s drawings on them flowed from the Nymølle earthenware factory from 1946. At the time, much of what was produced at the Nymølle earthenware factory was made in larger quantities, and you may still be lucky enough to find original Bjørn Wiinblad products at reasonable prices.
Bjørn Wiinblad has been described as an artist with a thousand faces, because he kept reinventing himself so that he could find new places and new materials to decorate. His earthenware with the pretty prints, the smiling girls, the posters you’ll never finish exploring, and not least his candlesticks, glasses and bowls. All of them are infused with a joie de vivre and energy that are unique within Danish – and international – art and design.
A brief way to describe Bjørn Wiinblad would have to be 'creational happiness'. It’s the one description that permeates everything he created, both big and small. Bjørn Wiinblad made his mark on Danish design – from vases and mugs, to plates and candlesticks – and when you see one of his creations, you will never doubt that he is the artist behind it. For once, it’s actually true when someone says you’ve never seen anything like it: Neither before nor since has there been anyone like him.
After his death in 2006, Bjørn Wiinblad left behind an extensive legacy of drawings, posters, theater projects, ceramics, porcelain and bronze work, which is still being worked on today, with the respect it deserves, in a modern and functional design language. And Bjørn Wiinblad will undoubtedly be happy about how his works continue to be celebrated in a long list of new interpretations that beautifully celebrate the original motifs, as well as all the splendor and magic that is the essence of Bjørn Wiinblad’s work – and creational happiness – so that his unique, joyful spirit of life will also reach into the future, continue to push the limits of imagination, and spread joy and adventure.
When you look at his works together, you can almost hear him saying: Let in the magic and joy. The design's fairytale language is shared across all of Bjørn Wiinblad's creations and continues to spark joy. You can't help but explore the many details of his works. He painted oriental, opulent ladies and quirky fabled animals – and spread joy, magic and imagination among people, at a time when minimalism was at its most dominant. His brush swept into every nook and cranny of his art, and his urge to decorate kept him at the brush for life.
Bjørn Wiinblad represents everything that is crazy, quirky, creative and wonderful. He was anything but minimalistic, and he created a universe that was all-embracing, opulent, and highly defined by whimsical lines and vibrant colors. His unstoppable cravings to create, unique style, and boundless talent made him a world-class world artist within Danish art across a spectrum of materials and formats.
It is precisely this unique look, his imaginative world, and his opulent design that have made Bjørn Wiinblad a popular brand among those who wish to inject a little more life and magic into their everyday and festive occasions. Bjørn Wiinblad’s earthenware, crockery and candlesticks have gained a foothold in many Danish homes where, with their characteristic lines and quirky expressions, they stand out from the rest of the Danish design style.
For Bjørn Wiinblad, women were a source of eternal inspiration, as can be seen in his many artistic portraits of the mysteriously smiling female faces. Each series represents a distinctive and characteristic Bjørn Wiinblad design. And this is certainly true of the popular Eva series, which instantly adds a touch of colorful retro cool to your home, with its lovely neck and beautiful motif of a woman’s face.
Bjørn Wiinblad was a cheerful artist with a big and colorful personality who did his own thing and wasn't afraid to dream and think big. The essence of this is very much felt in the Eva series' vases, flowerpots, candlesticks and mugs, each of which is beautiful in its own right, and encourages us to express our own style and personality in our interior design with colorful bouquets of flowers, exotic plants, candles and creative decorations. One thing is for certain! When you invite Eva inside, there will always be opulence in full bloom.
Bjørn Wiinblad was a lover of life. He loved candles, good food, good company and the joy of giving. With his magical expressions, distinctive lines, and vibrant colors, Bjørn Wiinblad is an unparalleled Danish design story. The whimsical faces and imaginative motifs of this multi-talented artist still fill homes and spaces around the world today with joy and energy.
The opulent ladies and cunning fabled animals, the graceful pottery and the magnificent candleholders, glasses and bowls, all of them represent Bjørn Wiinblad’s originality and love of play through their detailed patterns and decorations. An unparalleled creative talent that remains unique within Danish design and expression.
Bjørn Wiinblad’s motifs pay tribute to opulence. It is the tale of a functional design so bold and magical that it becomes impossible not to see in it all the joy and spirit of life.