Data + Design Project

Rooms Illustrated Using Their Descriptive Words

Monday 05.27.2013 , Posted by
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Modern Mantra is a highly unusual series of 18 drawings from Swedish artist Thomas Broomé. Using Indian ink on white paper he creates home interiors completely from written words describing the objects he draws. In this way the words simultaneously describe what they visually depict. In the case of his piece called Bedroom, the flowing sheet covering the bed is built up of repeating versions of the work “BED,” while the pillows are similarly created using only the word “PILLOW.” Each repeated word is distorted and placed in perspective to accurately represent the object it symbolizes, and besides those found in the words, no lines are used.

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Broomé’s drawings could be described as bringing out the ‘spirit’ of each word and showing it in reality – as if simply speaking the word itself brought the object into being. Another way to look at the work is one of decoding, like seeing beyond the material world into a computer generation resembling the Matrix – a world where all perceived objects are just reflections of a descriptive code.

Broomé’s execution of each piece is brilliantly realized. From the clear shower doors in Bathroom, where the text can be seen overlapping through multiple panes of glass, to Ikea, which only uses the brand names and furniture from the iconic Swedish megastore. See more of Modern Mantra and further examples of Thomas Broomé’s work at thomasbroome.se.

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Benjamin Starr

Written by Benjamin Starr



Known in some circles as the most amazing man in the universe, he once saved an entire family of muskrats from a sinking, fire engulfed steamboat while recovering from two broken arms relating to a botched no-chute wingsuit landing in North Korea. When not impressing people with his humbling humility, he can be found freelance writing, finding shiny objects on the internet, enjoying the company of much-appreciated friends and living out his nomadic nature. He is Managing Editor of Visual News. Follow his movements on Twitter:

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