Olle Baertling (1911-1981)
Painter, designer and sculptor Olle Baertling was linked to a group of non-figurative artists around the gallerist Denise René in Paris. At the beginning, his idiom was dominated by flat colour surfaces and lines and from the mid-50’ies by triangles and diagonals.
Baertling is associated with the concept of ”The Open Form”, because it was his ambition to represent space and movement by means of figures that continued outside the surface of the picture. Lines and often vast colour-fields in black were characteristic of his paintings, contrasted against ”Baertling-white”, an off-white nuance, often with an additional colour as well. Baertling preferred artificial colour-shades that did not influence the spectator to associations with Nature. He claimed that black was a magical colour; light, joyful and beautiful. He was extremely particular about the colour-shades, so it is said, because he wanted the colours to turn out exactly right when they were to be transferred on to the material.
Olle Baertling contributed with two patterns to ”Signed Textile”: ”Margot” and ”Denise”. The original for the pattern ”Denise” is a gouache: black background with white lines and a small bright turquoise-coloured rectangle in one corner. The pattern is said to have been named after Denise René, the owner of one of the most prominent galleries for abstract art in Paris in the 1950’ies. It is printed on a robust cotton velvet.