Minimal mood, essentiality and harmony are the essential for the illustrations of Jorddvn Atelier, an extraordinary duo made in the empire state of Brussels. Excited by fashion, internet culture and commercial, Jorddvn Atelier expresses itself through bright visions of the real world giving a sense of naïve and of absolute harmony.
But less words and more talk, let’s go deep in our conversation with Jorddvn atelier.
Who hides behind the name Jorddvn atelier ?
We are Hélène and Ferdinand, we are in love, we are almost 25, we are French and we live together in Brussels for five years. Our small apartment is also the place where we do all of our creations. In “real life”, Hélène is a graphic designer and Ferdinand is a web writer. As far as we remember, we both have always loved to draw. But one year ago, Hélène had the idea to create a postcards collection by combining our drawings on a same support : that’s how Jorddvn Atelier was born. When she has a pen, Hélène draws small thoughtful characters, some teasing hands and mysterious shapes. Ferdinand has fun at inventing impossible clothes and everyday objects. We both have a very spontaneous approach of drawing and we love to clash childish visuals and sexy and erotic content.
Little by little, our atelier has grown : we’ve made stickers, notebooks, t-shirts and more recently tote-bags. Step by step, all these creations led us to experiment different creative processes : cutouts, cadavres exquis, Photoshop…
Indeed, it’s not that easy to build harmony with four hands and two brains ! We can say that our main and daily challenge is to combine both our styles and references on the same place with harmony.
Since we created our Etsy shop, our creations traveled all around the world : in France, Holland, Canada, the USA, Germany, Belgium… and soon in Italy ! And thanks to social medias and more particularly Instagram, we met people with who we did very nice collaborations : we’ve made an illustration for the Pussy Party Collective, a Planned Parenthood based in the USA ; we’ve created t-shirts with Petit_Shirt, a French textile studio ; and we’ve also drawn tattoos with Rozita_ttoo, a girl from Hungar.
What inspires you?
To be honest, we’re very curious ! We mostly get inspired by classical art : Modigliani, Vermeer, Léger, Matisse, Botero, Bosch, Le Douanier Rousseau, Brueghel… All these painters are fully part of our imaginary creative. But we are also fascinated by contemporary and popular iconography : clips (Ferdinand worships Nicki Minaj…), fashion (Balenciaga, Raf Simons, Fendi, Vetements…), commercials, Internet culture, movies, sculpture, design, minimalism, nature, tattoos. We are used to saving a lot of pictures on our computers and to re-draw them on our very own ways.
We’re also amazed by all the creations which are exposed on Instagram. This social media is so rich and leads to know so many artists ! Lately, we’re fascinated by ceramic creations…
Do your works want to deliver any message?
As you might have understood, we love to mix up a lot of styles and eras. So, with a little bit of pretension, we can say that we deliver a “post-modern” message because of our taste to blend references together.
But we are far from trying to deliver any political message into our work. When we draw, we just let our hands get expressed without trying to evoke any discourse. Our process of creation doesn’t work when we start by thinking of what message we can deliver. With experience, we noticed that it prevents our creativity to pop up. For example, a few months ago we wanted to participate to a poster competition. There was an imposed theme to respect, something like “the future of the world”. We tried and tried, but finally we didn’t like none of our works, so we decided to abandon the project!
To conclude, we’re more like avoiding to deliver a message to let people just interpret our work as they want to. We believe that the most important message is being just appreciated.
What is your relationship with colours?
Most of our illustrations are drawn with black pens, with no colours. We want to keep a minimal mood in our creations, we don’t want to add colours because they saturate our drawings.
However, we use colours as a tool to highlight harmony between both of our drawings : we keep on using only three different colours (green, blue, pink, yellow) as backgrounds or pattern shapes. It allows to create a conductive thread all along our creations.
How the place you live inspire your work?
Brussels is an amazing city regarding culture. Here, there is always something to do : exhibitions, clubbing, little shops… All this effervescence led us to hope that 2018 will be the year in which we will get exposed for the first time. And it might be the case! We are actually planning a collab with a little second-hand shop named “La Caravane”, in which we’ll be soon exposed for a month.