Jan 22 2010

Who Drew That Label? Just Grapes Artist Series: István Orosz


We at Just Grapes love a good wine label as much as the next person, so we’re starting a series of blog posts dedicated to the artists that make those bottles great! Fess up to it or not, the way a wine bottle looks is almost as important as what’s on the inside. The label is a marketing tool, meant to make a bottle jump off the shelf and into your arms. Save for a few countries where the wine produced is so ubiquitous, they could put a drowned kitten on the label and people would still buy and love it (France, anyone?), most wineries don’t have that kind of luxury.

If you’ve been in the shop anytime in the past, oh, three months or so (oh you haven’t, you say? Well you’re due for a visit!), you may have seen some very distinctive labels on a few of our bottles. The 2007 Skulls, the cheeky 2007 Chateau Chateau Chateau, and the epic Anamorphosis all have one thing in common (besides being Australian and having Parker ratings): the art of Hungarian István Orosz graces each of their labels (and in Anamorphosis’ case, the incredible poster that is meant to be reflected in its mirrored bottle).

Born in 1951, Orosz—who also goes uses the pseudonym Utisz, which means “no one”—is an accomplished painter, graphic designer, printmaker, animated film director and a bunch of other titles of media manipulation and creation I’m sure he’d want me to list here (artists…). Often compared to M.C. Escher, Orosz loves creating images of impossible objects and geometric, mathematical illusions.

Resurrecting anomorphoses (Greek for “re-transformation”), an illustration that plays with perspective and optical illusion that was popular during the Renaissance, Orosz breathes fresh life into the technique. Early is his career, he focused on producing theater, movie and exhibition posters. With all the democratic changes in Eastern Europe in the 80’s, he was into drawing political posters as well. So he was quite the revolutionary as well.

Check out some of his art that isn’t on our wine bottles:





“There are things I can imagine and I can draw. There are things I can imagine but I cannot draw. But, could I draw something that I cannot imagine? That interests me greatly.” – István Orosz


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