Karl-Oskar Blase

Biography

Publicity, book design, packaging, exhibition design. Born 24 March 1925 in Cologne. 1945-9: studied applied art at Staatliche Werkkunstschule, Wuppertal, and at Jupp Ernst studio. 1950: established the ‘müller-blase’ studio, Wuppertal (with Felix Müller) ; member of Deutscher Werkbund. From 1952: director of studio Hicog for America House (Amerika-Haus) exhibitions, Bonn. 1955-88: designed posters, postage stamps (over 400, of which 60 were used) and trademarks. 1957-68: work for journal form including design of covers. From 1958 taught applied arts and visual communication at Staatliche Werkkunstschule, Kassel, and established a studio there. By 1959: member of design group Novum-Gesellschaft (with Hillmann, Lortz and others). From 1964: member of Alliance Graphique Internationale. From 1966: director, graphics department, Wuppertal Werkkunstschule (now the Gesamthochschule Kassel, Universität des Landes Hessen). 1966-78: designed posters for Kassel state theatre. 1967: member of the design team for the German pavilion, EXPO, Montreal. 1968: designed publicity and signage for ‘4documenta’, Kassel. From 1988: member of Art Advisory Committee to the German Minister of Post and Telecommunications (1992: chairman). Awarded gold medal at Milan Triennale, 1957. Work exhibited in Kassel documenta 1964, 1968, 1972, 1977.

Writings by

  • A homage to Anton Stankowski, in Für Anton Stankowski, Ludwigsburg: Avedition, 2000, pp. 26-7
  • Texte über Kunst und Visuelle Kommunikation, Munich: Verlag Silke Schreiber, 1991.
  • Walter Amstutz (ed.), Who’s Who in Graphic Art, Zurich: Amstutz & Herdeg Graphis Press, 1962. , 1962
  • Walter Amstutz (ed.), Who’s Who in Graphic Art, 2nd ed., Dübendorf, 1982., 1982
  • ‘The new signet of the “Preussag”’, Gebrauchsgraphik (International Advertising Art), Berlin: Phönix Illustrationsdruck und Verlag GmbH (later: ‘Gebrauchsgraphik’ Druck und Verlag GmbH), 1933-71. Published from Munich from 1950., Feb. 1970, pp. 50-51

Writings about

  • Carl Heussner, ‘müller-blase’, Gebrauchsgraphik (International Advertising Art), Berlin: Phönix Illustrationsdruck und Verlag GmbH (later: ‘Gebrauchsgraphik’ Druck und Verlag GmbH), 1933-71. Published from Munich from 1950., Nov. 1953, pp. 26-33
  • E. Hölscher, ‘50 years of the German P.O. motorbuses’, Gebrauchsgraphik (International Advertising Art), Berlin: Phönix Illustrationsdruck und Verlag GmbH (later: ‘Gebrauchsgraphik’ Druck und Verlag GmbH), 1933-71. Published from Munich from 1950., Nov. 1955, pp. 18-23
  • E. Hölscher, ‘The best German posters of 1955’, Gebrauchsgraphik (International Advertising Art), Berlin: Phönix Illustrationsdruck und Verlag GmbH (later: ‘Gebrauchsgraphik’ Druck und Verlag GmbH), 1933-71. Published from Munich from 1950., Aug. 1956, pp. 18-25
  • A comprehensive reference to Blase is the 1995 Kassel/Essen exh. cat .
  • 1951-9: Eberhard Hölscher, ‘Advertising art in post-war Germany’, Graphis 34, 1951, pp. 58-79
  • E. Hölscher, ‘The special stamps of the Federal Postal Services 1956’, Gebrauchsgraphik (International Advertising Art), Berlin: Phönix Illustrationsdruck und Verlag GmbH (later: ‘Gebrauchsgraphik’ Druck und Verlag GmbH), 1933-71. Published from Munich from 1950., March 1957, pp. 22-7
  • Erich Wenzel, ‘German Post Office advertising’, Graphis 99, 1962, pp. 58-63, 88, 91 Richard Roth, ‘Postage stamp design in West Germany’, Graphis 208, 1980, pp. 146-9, 184
  • Heiner Georgsdorf, Walfried Pohl and others, Karl Oskar Blase, Grafik Design von ’49 bis ’95 (exh. cat.), Kassel: Kasseler Kunstverein, and Essen: Deutsches Plakat Museum, 1995
  • Carl Heussner, ‘Through the year with the mails’ (Federal Postal Services calendar), Gebrauchsgraphik (International Advertising Art), Berlin: Phönix Illustrationsdruck und Verlag GmbH (later: ‘Gebrauchsgraphik’ Druck und Verlag GmbH), 1933-71. Published from Munich from 1950., April 1958, pp. 2-7
  • E. Hölscher, ‘Calendar review 1958/9’, Gebrauchsgraphik (International Advertising Art), Berlin: Phönix Illustrationsdruck und Verlag GmbH (later: ‘Gebrauchsgraphik’ Druck und Verlag GmbH), 1933-71. Published from Munich from 1950., July 1959, pp. 18-25
  • 1960-present: E. Hölscher, ‘One year with the Federal Mails’ (Bundespost calendar), Gebrauchsgraphik (International Advertising Art), Berlin: Phönix Illustrationsdruck und Verlag GmbH (later: ‘Gebrauchsgraphik’ Druck und Verlag GmbH), 1933-71. Published from Munich from 1950., Nov. 1960, pp. 50-56
  • Theodor Hilten, ‘Karl Oskar Blase’, Gebrauchsgraphik (International Advertising Art), Berlin: Phönix Illustrationsdruck und Verlag GmbH (later: ‘Gebrauchsgraphik’ Druck und Verlag GmbH), 1933-71. Published from Munich from 1950., March 1962, pp. 32-41
  • E. Hölscher, ‘The best German posters of 1962/3’, Gebrauchsgraphik (International Advertising Art), Berlin: Phönix Illustrationsdruck und Verlag GmbH (later: ‘Gebrauchsgraphik’ Druck und Verlag GmbH), 1933-71. Published from Munich from 1950., Aug. 1963, pp. 2-13
  • Hellmut Rademacher, Das deutsche Plakat. Von den Anfängen bis zur Gegenwart, Dresden: VEB Verlag der Kunst, 1965., 1965, pp. 276, 282 (work)
  • E. Hölscher, ‘The new image of “documenta”. Graphic designs by Karl-Oskar Blase’, Gebrauchsgraphik (International Advertising Art), Berlin: Phönix Illustrationsdruck und Verlag GmbH (later: ‘Gebrauchsgraphik’ Druck und Verlag GmbH), 1933-71. Published from Munich from 1950., Mar. 1969, pp. 10-13
  • Dieter Urban, ‘Postage stamp design by Karl Oskar Blase’, novum, Aug. 1982, pp. 24-31
  • Allgemeines Künstlerlexikon, Munich/Leipzig: K.G. Saur Verlag, 1990-., 1995
  • Friedrich Friedl, Nicolaus Ott, Bernard Stein, Typography – when/who/how, Cologne: Könemann Verlagsgesellschaft mbH, 1998., 1998.
  • Ludwig Ebenhöh, ‘müller-blase’, Gebrauchsgraphik (International Advertising Art), Berlin: Phönix Illustrationsdruck und Verlag GmbH (later: ‘Gebrauchsgraphik’ Druck und Verlag GmbH), 1933-71. Published from Munich from 1950., June 1955, pp. 8-13
  • E. Hölscher, ‘Special postage stamps issued by the German Federal Post Office in 1955’, Gebrauchsgraphik (International Advertising Art), Berlin: Phönix Illustrationsdruck und Verlag GmbH (later: ‘Gebrauchsgraphik’ Druck und Verlag GmbH), 1933-71. Published from Munich from 1950., Dec. 1955, pp. 8-13
  • E. Hölscher, ‘The best German posters of 1956, Gebrauchsgraphik (International Advertising Art), Berlin: Phönix Illustrationsdruck und Verlag GmbH (later: ‘Gebrauchsgraphik’ Druck und Verlag GmbH), 1933-71. Published from Munich from 1950., Aug. 1957, pp. 2-7
  • E. Hölscher, ‘A new system of exhibition’ (America House), Gebrauchsgraphik (International Advertising Art), Berlin: Phönix Illustrationsdruck und Verlag GmbH (later: ‘Gebrauchsgraphik’ Druck und Verlag GmbH), 1933-71. Published from Munich from 1950., Nov. 1957, pp. 52-3
  • Erich Pfeiffer-Belli, ‘The exhibition programmes of the German Council of Art’, Gebrauchsgraphik (International Advertising Art), Berlin: Phönix Illustrationsdruck und Verlag GmbH (later: ‘Gebrauchsgraphik’ Druck und Verlag GmbH), 1933-71. Published from Munich from 1950., March 1959, pp. 48-53 (esp. p. 53)
  • Werner Schwier, ‘A Novum in commercial graphic art’ (design group: Novum-Gesellschaft für neue Grafik mbH), Gebrauchsgraphik (International Advertising Art), Berlin: Phönix Illustrationsdruck und Verlag GmbH (later: ‘Gebrauchsgraphik’ Druck und Verlag GmbH), 1933-71. Published from Munich from 1950., Oct. 1959, pp. 10-19
  • E. Hölscher, ‘German posters 1961/2’, Gebrauchsgraphik (International Advertising Art), Berlin: Phönix Illustrationsdruck und Verlag GmbH (later: ‘Gebrauchsgraphik’ Druck und Verlag GmbH), 1933-71. Published from Munich from 1950., Aug. 1962, pp. 10-23
  • E. Hölscher, ‘The best German posters of 1963/4’, Gebrauchsgraphik (International Advertising Art), Berlin: Phönix Illustrationsdruck und Verlag GmbH (later: ‘Gebrauchsgraphik’ Druck und Verlag GmbH), 1933-71. Published from Munich from 1950., Aug. 1964, pp. 2-17
  • E. Hölscher, ‘Karl Oskar Blase, recent works’, Gebrauchsgraphik (International Advertising Art), Berlin: Phönix Illustrationsdruck und Verlag GmbH (later: ‘Gebrauchsgraphik’ Druck und Verlag GmbH), 1933-71. Published from Munich from 1950., Aug. 1968, pp. 10-21
  • Kurt Kranz, ‘German postage stamps’, Gebrauchsgraphik (International Advertising Art), Berlin: Phönix Illustrationsdruck und Verlag GmbH (later: ‘Gebrauchsgraphik’ Druck und Verlag GmbH), 1933-71. Published from Munich from 1950., Feb. 1970, pp. 10-15

Exhibitions

  • Bonn, 1958
  • Oldenburg, 1965
  • Kassel, 1967
  • Berlin, 1967
  • Wuppertal, 1968
  • Hofheim/Taunus, 1969
  • Bonn, 1974
  • Haus am Lützowplatz, Berlin, 1981
  • Neue Galerie, Kassel, 1992.