Sture Johannesson is a Swedish visual artist and poster designer. With his provocative and mind bending works of art, he has been an important force in the Scandinavian counterculture ever since the 1960s. In the beginning of 2006, Sture agreed to design a logo for Rucksack Records. He also created a picture suite titled Rucksack - With A Twisted Bomb. This "visual story" is a brilliant way to get to know the concepts and ideas behind the logo that Sture made for the label.
Johannesson is a highly controversial figure in the Swedish art scene. In 1968 he designed a poster titled Revolution Means Revolutionary Consciousness (commonly refered to as the "Hash Girl" poster). This work contained, among other things, a nude woman and a leaf from the hemp plant. The poster caused a huge stir in Sweden, and subsequently most of the posters were burned by the Swedish authorities.
Although still to this day not accepted by the Swedish art establishment, Johannesson’s works are constantly featured in exhibitions around the world, eg. the Museum of Contemporary Art (Los Angeles) and the Whitney Museum of American Art (New York).
As for the logo that Sture designed for Rucksack Records, it features a highly stylised rucksack containing a bomb with a fuse burning. Johannesson wanted to make a reference to the suicide bombers in the UK, who carried their bombs in Rucksacks, but reversing the symbol of the bomb into something positive, instead making it a reference to music that blows your mind. The bomb can also be seen as a 12 inch record ready to sonically explode.
Make sure to pay a visit to Johannesson’s web page. There you will find pictures of many of his brilliant posters and artworks.
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