fredag 21 februari 2014


All of his life Gustaf Tenggren was adaptive for new styles, techniques and motifs. There are several examples where influence from other artists is obvious: Arthur Rackham, John Bauer, Axel Gallén-Kallela, Ivar Arosenius and Edmund Dulac are just some of them. That is simply the price you pay to be working within a tradition.
Among the artists he loved to get inspiration from, he counted himself. He kept a vast and growing archive of images from magazines, art books and illustrations, including his own. Here is one of the more apparent examples: a tale of giants from Grimm's Fairy Tales.
Grimm's Eventyr, 1923
The Tenggren Tell-It-Again Book, 1942
The first one is from Grimm's Eventyr, published by Jespersen's forlag in Denmark 1923. The second comes from The Tenggren's Tell-It-Again Book, published by Little, Brown & Co in 1942.
The difference in style is obvious. Between the two, Gustaf Tenggren had been flushed through the big style washing machine, Walt Disney's Studios, where he did play a large role for the style of many animated film classics: Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, Pinocchio, Fantasia and Bambi to mention some. Still, I think he made it through to the other side very well. He kept his draftsmanship and eye for color all of his life; you can always spot a Tenggren artwork, be it old or new... sorry, less old.