Graphic designer, illustrator and author of childrens books Dick Bruna (1927) has agreed a long-term loan of a selection of his work to the Print Room of the Rijksmuseum
, the national museum of the Netherlands. His designs for paperback covers, advertising material and childrens books, obviously including Miffy, cover the period from 1953 to 2007.
The Rijksmuseum has selected over 120 creations on paper from Brunas body of work. The selection includes famous designs such as the Zwarte Beertjes paperback covers (Havank, Charteris and Simenon) from the 1960s and 1970s, advertising campaigns (the poster for buttermilk with the slogan Karnemelk, omdat t zo fris is [Buttermilk, because its so refreshing]) and final drawings in poster paint for the book Circus. Visitors can follow the entire design process for the book Miffys Letter, because the museum has obtained design sketches and fully developed drawings as well as unused drawings as part of the loan. Bruna used ink, pencils and poster paint to produce his drawings and sketches. Collage techniques were also employed on a regular basis, especially in Brunas book cover designs.
Marijn Schapelhouman, Senior Curator Drawings: In recent months I have studied Dick Brunas work in great detail. Because my original specialism is classical art, I tend to look at contemporary art from a classical-art perspective, focussing on the craftsmanship, how the work was created. What strikes me about Brunas work is the careful approach, the calm deliberation with which the work was created. It is art that is the result of weighing the pros and cons, turning things this way and that, looking and then looking again and eventually leaving out as much as possible. In all its apparent simplicity, it is the work of a perfectionist.
Annemies Broekgaarden, Head of Education & Public Information: People of all ages are touched by the power of Dick Brunas images, from Europe to Japan, from China to the US. Using work by Dick Bruna and inspired by 17th century masters, our new workshop takes young visitors on a quest for the essence of the image, its meaning and its eloquence.