Strandgut – Vasas Flora Och Fauna by Bedow
Opinion by Richard Baird
Vasas Flora Och Fauna is a Finnish indie pop-group and trio of musicians. Their new album Strandgut is made up from eleven songs taken from the band’s first two albums, which were then re-recorded in German. This was released on both LP and CD by the record label Startracks. Swedish design studio Bedow worked with Vasas Flora Och Fauna to create the packaging for Strandgut. Referring to the album’s title, jetsam in English, this features a series of figures/sculptures that have been built from maritime debris found on the beach. This is complemented by a custom typeface of drawn and ribbon-like letterforms.
Jetsam is specifically unwanted material or goods that have been thrown overboard from a ship and washed ashore also, material discarded to lighten a vessel. This is distinguished from flotsam which is the wreckage of a ship or its cargo floating in or washed up by the sea. This transition from one state to another, reinvention and reimagining, creativity and play from the previously used sits well within the context of the translation and the re-recording of earlier songs for this new album. The trio of figures/sculptures are beautifully crafted and composed with a lovely balance of colour, form and texture, pulled out and emphasised by a black ground. The bubble blower as glasses and the three distinct bases are particular highlights, as is the intelligible maritime theme.
A light whispy custom typeface, as if constructed from ribbon caught in a sea breeze or riding the waves, the use of multiple character styles, the implication of motion in the absence of repetition shares something in common with the figures, that the letters are built from what was available. There is an art, design and craft to the work, a clear concept executed in a cheerful and creative way. More work by Bedow on BP&O.
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