Brilliant colors, bold strokes – the pictures Laura Owens paints are powerful. It was with that same energy and clarity of purpose that this 44-year-old American artist approached her task of designing Ringier’s annual report. What she envisioned was a 1940s-style art magazine, using paper with appealing tactile qualities to accommodate her art and restrained graphics from the pre-computer age for the report section itself. The idea was to bring traditional printing craftsmanship back to life. The cover is produced using book-printing techniques, while screen printing has been used for the art pages. More modern offset methods were restricted to the figures section. To lend further emphasis to the disparities between printing methods, there are no colors at all in the text itself. Only illustrations and black-and-white advertisements were allowed. The craftsmen producing the report did allow themselves a little room for self-expression though, by creating new retro-look advertisements for modern-day Ringier products.
Laura Owens is originally from Ohio, where she was born in 1970. She studied Art on the East and West coasts of the United States, now living and working on the latter. Her work soon attracted attention at exhibitions, including Art Basel, where she was awarded a prize in 1999. While she exhibits her work all over the world, in New York, Los Angeles or Shanghai, she continues to hold exhibitions in Europe, in London, Paris, Cologne, and has also returned to Basel.
The Ringier Annual Report is published in German, English and French. It can be downloaded from the Ringier Group website www.ringier.com, where it can also be ordered in hard-copy form.
Ringier AG, Corporate Communications