Wang & Söder­störm

Computer Arts - - 15 GAME CHANGERS -

Wang & Söderström is a Copen­hagen and Malmo-based art and de­sign prac­tice formed by spa­tial and fur­ni­ture de­signer Anny Wang and ar­chi­tect Tim Söderström. The stu­dio merges 3D soft­ware and an­i­ma­tion, with a fo­cus on ma­te­ri­al­ity to ex­plore the po­ten­tial of mix­ing the dig­i­tal and phys­i­cal to cre­ate — as they put it — “mind tick­ling and un­ex­pected ex­pe­ri­ences”.

A re­cent project saw the duo cre­ate an an­i­ma­tion for streetwear blog High­sno­bi­ety, one that rein­ter­preted Peter Sav­ille and Ric­cardo Tisci's new pat­tern for Burberry into a gor­geous piece of mov­ing image. “When work­ing with a brand, we al­ready get an ex­ist­ing his­tory and con­text that help us take cre­ative de­ci­sions,” they tell us. “We are by no means tech­ni­cal pro­fes­sion­als in the soft­ware we use, in­stead we try to see the learn­ing curve in it­self as a cre­ative tool. The chal­lenge in learn­ing some­thing new for us also pushes our work to un­ex­plored places and doesn't let it stag­nate.”

Away from their com­mis­sioned client work, the duo also cre­ate a stun­ning range of 3D printed sculp­tures — strange lit­tle amor­phous forms that seem at once like vi­sions of a sci-fi fu­ture and relics of the past. Their shapes are or­ganic, their colours wild and their over­all aes­thetic some­how sur­real and mag­i­cal. “Ma­te­ri­al­ity is such a phys­i­cal thing that ac­ti­vates all senses. How­ever in dig­i­tal 3D and an­i­ma­tion we are lim­ited to our sight and hear­ing,” they ex­plain. “The brain is so great at trans­lat­ing stuff into some­thing it has ex­pe­ri­enced be­fore, it wants things to make sense and put it into a space it recog­nises (the phys­i­cal world), so it adds fake sen­sa­tions of touch, smell and taste if it gets in­vited to do so.”

Polly Glass, co-founder of cre­ative plat­form Wrap, finds the stu­dio's work end­lessly “eye­catch­ing and fas­ci­nat­ing... It's of­ten hard to work out ex­actly what's go­ing on, and whether the im­ages are pho­to­graphs or dig­i­tal art­works. The stu­dio has a real tal­ent for vi­su­al­is­ing and bring­ing con­cepts to life in a fresh, unique way. Whether it's mag­a­zine cover de­signs, cam­paigns for Adi­das sneak­ers or win­dow in­stal­la­tions for Sel­fridges in Lon­don, Wang & Söderström's abil­ity to ap­ply its ideas and skills within 3D ren­der­ing to such var­ied projects, with bril­liant re­sults, is con­tin­u­ously ex­cit­ing.”

“A real tal­ent for vi­su­al­is­ing and bring­ing con­cepts to life in a fresh, unique way” POLLY GLASS, WRAP CO-FOUNDER

Clock­wise from top left: Vis­ual for Scan­di­na­vian glass­works com­pany Iit­tala; Wang & Söderström por­trait; dig­i­tal vis­ual for LEON mag­a­zine’s fourth is­sue themed around class.

This page, top to bot­tom: Wang & Söderström’s se­ries of 3D printed ob­jects, pho­to­graph by Andy Price; an in­ter­pre­ta­tion of Burberry’s new ‘TB’ pat­tern as a dig­i­tal an­i­ma­tion for an ar­ti­cle in High­sno­bi­ety; dig­i­tal vis­ual from Ta­ble of Con­tents, a per­sonal project by Wang & Söderström.

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