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In Full Bloom – Introducing Micke Lindebergh's collection for Wrap
26.01.22 Interview by Wrap / Photography by Darren L

In Full Bloom – Introducing Micke Lindebergh's collection for Wrap

To celebrate our new stationery range with Micke Lindebergh, we caught up with the Sydney-based artist and illustrator to find out more about his flower-filled compositions and how being a child of the '80s influenced his design aesthetic.
26.01.22 Interview by Wrap / Photography by Darren L

For our first Wrap collection of 2022, we've collaborated with Micke Lindebergh on a feel-good range of stationery and a 1,000 piece puzzle that showcases his love for joyful shape and colour combinations.

With a knack for creating artwork that makes people smile and an unbridled passion for sunshiny hues, Micke’s output spans paintings, prints, and designs for fashion and footwear. We knew he was just the guy to create cards, wrapping paper and notebooks that would brighten people's days and desks no end.

To celebrate the launch we chatted with Micke about his playful approach to designing his Wrap collection, the key moment flowers began to unfurl within his work and the wholesome chats he has with mum about the plants that populate his life. We also took a spin around his Sydney studio to see where the colourful magic happens.

Hey Micke! Can you tell us a bit about your artistic background?
I’ve been drawing since I was a kid and I think playing and constructing with Lego really cemented the beginnings of my artistic practice. I think my creative sensibility has been heavily influenced by growing up in Stockholm in the ‘80s. Being surrounded by Scandinavian design houses like Marimekko and 10-Gruppen definitely left a mark, as did IKEA’s ‘80s aesthetic which, looking back, had a real Memphis Milano influence.

After finishing high school I moved to London to study Illustration at Camberwell College of Arts and while I was there I got really into screen printing. I still think like a printmaker when designing and painting, and really enjoy crafting a flat, colourful surface. I find the print process very joyous! Studying at Camberwell is where I began to understand where my work could sit within the broader visual arts world.

You’re now based in Sydney, how did you end up there?
After many years in London followed by hopping around Europe for a few years with stints in Amsterdam and Barcelona, I eventually ended up in Sydney. New in town and in an attempt to make friends, I joined a risograph printing studio where I met so many nice people. I now share a studio with some of them.

I've been a self employed artist for five years now and I also teach design at University level. I love it! I enjoy talking about ideas with students and it's so fascinating seeing how different we all are as visual artists. I’ve learned so much about my own practice through teaching and consider it a real bonus.

What does a day in the life of Micke look like? Your studio looks like a fun place to be.
I usually start my day with coffee and a swim and then make my way to the studio. Lately I’ve been painting a lot alongside working on various commissions.

My studio is almost too much fun at times! I’m in a shared creative space in Surry Hills, Sydney, with 14 people in a giant space overlooking the city. I'm very lucky to have ended up in such a fun environment with such lovely people.

Talk us through your creative process? Are you mainly working by hand, or do you work digitally too? Do you have a favourite material to work with?
I love working by hand and am happy that not all my work involves a computer screen. I think that’s partly why I started painting. Saying that, I do also enjoy working digitally, though I mostly try to use it as a practical tool. My iPad is my sketchbook and I take it with me wherever I go. I used to walk around with a big backpack filled with Posca pens, crayons and various sketchbooks in different sizes but it makes way more sense to have an iPad. It's a genius invention!

Your work is so bright and cheerful! Has colour always been important to you?
Yes, it's pretty obvious that I love colour. I’ve always been drawn to bright colours and I think growing up in the ‘80s set the tone for that early on. My home has always been super colourful, and my favourite artists use a lot of colour too. Henri Matisse, Kieth Haring and Nathalie Du Pasquier are big sources of inspiration for me.

Flowers are constantly cropping up in your compositions. Can you remember when they first started appearing in your work?
A few years ago I was obsessively drawing simple shapes in different compositions. I remember going camping with some friends and we spent some days drawing, and flowers started to appear next to my circles and squiggles. Those sketches became the inspiration for my first flower-themed exhibition, 'Hong Kong Flowerpot' at Odd One Out in Hong Kong.

I have a bit of an obsession when it comes to taking pictures of flowers when I'm out for a walk and I have millions of photos of pot plants and flowers on my phone.

Do you surround yourself with real flowers day-to-day?
I have a lot of green plants in my house and studio and I sometimes like to get sunflowers or Australian natives from my local grocery. I have long phone conversations with my mum about pot plants and we keep each other updated on the progress of our own plants and I send here pictures of mine!

We’re so excited to have worked with you on a range of Wrap products! Do you have a favourite?
It is absolutely my favourite project from the last year! I loved every part of it. I really can’t choose a favourite as I’ll end up feeling guilty about only having one…but I do love the puzzle.

What was your approach when creating the collection?
It was such a fun process, which consisted of me drawing lots and lots of flowers in different compositions and in every conceivable colour combination. The jigsaw and the wrapping papers are based on a painting I made last year, and the handmade bubble text font used on my range of greetings cards is informed by my 'Love Is Love' poster. My favorite type-based ones are 'Just Wow' and 'Giant Super Yay. I’m very happy with the selection we made and your input really made it all come together and make sense as a collection – giant super yay!

Your Art Cards feature your signature blooms and greetings to send to those you love the most. Do you send cards and letters a lot yourself?
I really wish I did! This is probably a great time to start. I wanted my cards to be very joyous and have something for everyone in the range.

And finally, are you working on any exciting projects at the moment that you can share with us? What’s next for Micke?
I’m very excited about 2022 and hopefully the return of travel. I have two exhibitions coming up at MARS gallery in Melbourne in June, and Clinic in Tokyo this September. Both will comprise a collection of flower themed paintings. I’ve also been working on a traditional Swedish clog that will be available later this year, but for now I just need to finish my Wrap puzzle!

Click here to shop the full range of Micke's Wrap collection.

–––––––––––– / @micke_lindebergh