Kobolt Magazine: A Creative Art Project

Kobolt Magazine is a printed publication, designed as a fold down poster, featuring young creators and artists. To demystify Kobolt for our readers we decided to meet with the founders, Sara Börje and Klara Andersson Åsman, to figure out what Kobolt is all about.

Both study at Stockholm University, Klara is enrolled in the Cultural Studies Program with Art Histoy as her major, Sara is studying a BFA in Art History. When not too busy with studies or Kobolt, Sara freelances as an illustrator. Most recently working together with Unga Liljevalchs. Klara is a part of the Radar Magazine team, where she writes about art and culture in Stockholm. She has recently started a new project together with the Swedish Association for Arts and is currently working as a assistant at Galleri Bon.

No bullshit, these girls make things happen and they’re efficient enough to finish each other’s sentences.

What is Kobolt Magazine?
Sara: A printed publication featuring young mostly un-established artists. We also organize events in conjunction with our magazine launches.

Klara: An attempt to create a context, something to be mentioned in a list of qualifications and an object that invokes dialog.

When and why did you found Kobolt?
Both: March 2013.

S: We had just graduated high school where we attended a fine arts program. We wanted to continue our artistic practice, after leaving our safe zone at Södra Latins Gymnasium. So we rented a studio together. After a while, we started to feel that the work we were producing never left the studio. Even though we were posting our work online; our art never encountered a broader audience. Most of our friends, who also worked within the artistic field, had similar sentiments. We wanted to create a channel where we and other young artists could be visible.

K: Since we both have a background in practicing art, Kobolt was at first just an art-project to canalize our own production and creativity. We wanted to create a new type of way for displaying art and artists. We find that art doesn’t always have to be exposed in the classic white cube. In that sentiment, we wanted to create a place where we could work with art using different types of media.

S: The concept is still very much the same, although we’ve branched out a lot since then.

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Why team up with Radar for the launch party of your fifth issue?
K: Because we share the same vision as Radar. We both find that the threshold to the art world is too high. We want to make art more accessible and reach a broader audience, that’s why we chose to partner up with Radar.

Did you create Kobolt for artists or for the public?
S: Definitely both. It works as a meeting point between the two. It’s a venue for artists to meet a public that’s not necessarily the typical arty ones.

How is it financed?
S: Our initial idea was to issue a magazine each quarter but in reality it has been twice a year.

K: We have limited funds; we started from scratch with nothing.

Both: And we still have nothing!

S: We have some private funding and we’ve applied for scholarships through the city of Stockholm. The print of this issue has been sponsored by the agency Printfabriken, and the graphic design is made in collaboration with Amore Brand Identity Studios.

How do you select your artists?
S: At first we received the exact amount of entries that were needed. We expanded after the first issue from six to thirteen images.

K: We started looking for artists by contacting people we knew who were actively working within the field. As time past, we found that people were interested in collaborating with us – today we receive more submissions for each and every issue.

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In addition to painters, photographers and mixed media artists you have featured Amandah Andersson a fashion designer and an illustrator, Elis Burrau a poet and an editor at Nöjesguiden and Jakob Möller who creates music videos and visuals for clubs. How do they find you and why this mix?
S: A lot of our artists found us through mutual contacts, the internet or our events.

K: There is a large interest for art and culture in our social circles, which has worked to our benefit.

S: We want to include all types of cultural production.

K: We don’t really have a clear mission; we like to use the term creators therefore including different types of artistic expressions.

Has Kobolt helped any artists forward?
S: It’s difficult to say…during our first launch party, one of our promoted artists sold one of her pieces.

K: It’s important to create a context between artists and a public audience. Kobolt can work as a starting point for the artists to be introduced to the art world.

Where can I pick up Kobolt?
K: At our launch parties. They’re fun, people come and take part of a larger event. We have an exhibition, a live-act and the magazine. You can also download a digital version published by Telegram Studios.

Don’t miss the chance to snagg your copy of kobolt no.5 at the release party brought to you in collaboration with Radar. Join us for an evening of art, music and lots of fun!

Lydmar Hotel, January 21, 20:00-01:00. No guest list, show up early.

Find the Facebook event here for more information!