Introducing Klas Ernflo
Klas is the latest artist to join us at Breed, and we thought we should take the opportunity to let him introduce himself with a quick Q&A. A few background details – Klas is from Sweden, but has lived for some years in Spain, Barcelona to be precise. His work encompasses painting, design and, more recently, sculpture, which has literally added a whole new dimension to his art. And his work reveals a unique perspective on everyday objects. Over to Klas:
When did you start drawing?
I’ve been drawing for as long as I can remember.
Did you always think art was something that was going to be a major part of your life?
I always wanted to be involved in art in some form. As a teenager I walked around with a camera a lot and thought that I wanted to be a photographer.
Then I wanted to study architecture, but I didn’t have good enough grades and failed the practical test. I stumbled into a friend-of-a-friend who worked in advertising and he got me an assistant job with a graphic designer. It circled around some sort of art always.
Was there someone who led you in that direction, or encouraged you?
I had a great art teacher in middle school and another one just as great in high school. They both encouraged me to think I could work with art.
Did the work of other artists inform the way you think about what you’re doing?
I adore so much work of other artists, and I feel very influenced by others. I try my best to digest it and take into my own world.
How did you get into graphic design?
My step-brother used to make super nice covers for his mix cassettes with cut-outs from magazines in the late 80s, looking a bit like The Smiths’ covers.
I copied him but I would also paint on top of the magazine images. I never managed to make anything nicer than him but it was the first graphic design I ever made. Assisting two good graphic designers later made me want to study it.
You have a very distinct way of portraying objects. Did that come full-formed or did your style develop over time?
I feel like I’m still developing it, so definitely over time. I have always preferred round-edged organic and organised forms in front of spiky and chaotic ones.
Do you think moving to Spain had a direct impact on your work?
I remember when I studied in Stockholm, class-mates told me that some of the projects I made felt Mediterranean and not very Scandinavian at all. Here in Spain I think people saw my work as very Nordic. There was something there from the start I think, that was influenced by what’s far away from home. I’m sure living here has an impact, too.
How did adding sculpture to your repertoire change the way you think about your work?
I just started making sculptures for fun, like to relax. It was going back to feel more loose, have greater room for errors and a less clear finish line. Hopefully, it may have made my other work a bit less studied also. I feel it has a little.
Do you have an artistic format you prefer?
I love drawing and painting, but lately sculpting makes me feel a little more excited I think. Then again, it’s nice to go back to drawing after. I don’t really prefer anything ahead of the others when I think about it. In the end, everything is part of the same small world.
Your work looks very neat and precise. Do you plan it carefully or is there room for spontaneity?
I do sketch and draw a lot before painting something, but there are always things that change during working. I’m working on letting go more!
What are your plans for the near future?
To draw, paint and make things.