Omriku: Out of the Boxby Yuval Saar | 30.03.15
The launching event for the third class of the Bat Yam Design Terminal – of the Outbox non-profit organization – took place last week in Bat Yam. Outbox was established by a group of young people in 2010 to advance the field of design in Israel, and to use design as a tool for economic, social and cultural change in the Israeli society.
Illustrator Omri Cohen, 31 years old, is one of the happy 14 who were chosen out of hundreds of applicants to be part of the group. Throughout the year they will receive group and individual guidance, alongside business tools and a shared work space. In addition, as part of the collaboration between Outbox and the Bat Yam Municipality, they teach design in schools throughout the city in the framework of the “Design the Future” foundation.
Cohen was born in the desert city of Arad in 1984, where he also grew up. After his military service he moved to Tel Aviv and was accepted to study visual communications at Shenkar. In his third year he went on a student exchange program to the High School of Design at Luzern (Hochschule D&K) in Switzerland, and after receiving his degree in 2012 he was accepted to work at Shira Shechter’s branding studio, where he worked as a graphic designer and illustrator. After a year of working for her he decided to embark on the path to becoming an independent and opened his own studio – omriku.
These days he regularly illustrates for the online magazine The Hottest Place in Hell – an independent news magazine covering social issues, that uses illustration commonly, as well as the “Pnai Plus” magazine (Israel’s leading entertainment magazine). In addition he works with commercial clients like the “Gershaim” company which produces products that advocate the Hebrew language. He illustrated two projects for them – a series of greeting cards illustrated with Hebrew songs, and a set of illustrated cup coasters that also present Hebrew songs. Other clients of his include “Yanga”, “Daniella” (clothing store chains) and more.
Images by FotoFoto
These days Cohen is presenting at the “Still Optimistic” exhibition, commemorating ten years to the death of Dudu Geva (one of Israel’s most known caricaturist) at the Technological Institute of Holon. Last year he presented at the Tel Aviv Illustration Week at the exhibit “Illustrator Illustrates Illustrator” of the Shenkar Visual Communications Department, at the Tel Aviv Port. Pairs that were coupled from the department’s illustration staff and its alumni, created pieces in which each member of the pair was asked to address the other, including his work, personality, and other aspects of his life. Cohen presented alongside the head of the illustration ward, Itamar Dauba. They created a video in which portraits of Jesus, Mickey Mouse, Van Gogh, Charlie Chaplin, Elvis Presley and more, mixed into one another in a short, intimate and an amusing loop.
Another version of this post was originally published in Hebrew on http://byfar.co.il and translated by Yuval Regev.