Noma Bar Goes 3-D for Wallpaper* Magazine

With London-based Israeli illustrator Noma Bar, viewers have to look at his work at least twice — once to see the image in the positive space and again to see how the shape of the negative space creates a whole other picture. That’s the way Bar likes it. “Most of my images are not immediately obvious to readers. Most of them require a second reading or take a minute to interpret.” Irresistibly drawn to making viewers do double-takes, Bar extended this approach in another direction on the cover of Wallpaper* magazine, painting in 3-D and incorporating real objects.

Bar was commissioned by Wallpaper* , an international authority on cutting-edge design and style, to create eight newsstand covers for its Global Design issue, one for each of the world’s top design territories –Germany, the U.S., France, Italy, Spain, Japan, Belgium and Scandinavia (Norway, Sweden and Denmark). Tony Chambers, Wallpaper* editor-in-chief, says, “Bar entered a new dimension just for us. His cover designs are, in fact, room sets, painted in a three-dimensional studio space and integrating actual products from each of the territories.”

Bar adds, “The challenge of the Wallpaper* design brief lay in the highly interpretive notion of what each territory represents. I incorporated the furniture and objects in the foreground of the images and painted the background to create subtle references to new and old icons for each country” — hence, the American eagle, the Spanish matador and Japanese geisha, and the use of Andreas Engsvik’s candleholder to form the jaw of the Scandinavian polar bear and Jean Nouvel’s chairs for the eyes of the Frenchman.

Following the April release of the Global Design issue, Wallpaper* plans to offer the eight cover images as coverline-free posters and limited edition prints, available individually or as a set.