Bulgarian-born Luba Lukova, who now lives and works in New York City, is one of the most distinctive image-makers working today. Whether by using an economy of line, colour and text to pinpoint essential themes of the human condition or to succinctly illustrate social commentary, her work is undeniably powerful and thought provoking.
In a climate dominated by complex multi-layered imagery, Lukova's designs are a refreshing contrast. Using limited colour, engaging composition and hand-lettered typography, her distinctive graphic style is powerful in its simplicity, energetic contrasts and vivid colour, often achieved with a single ink on coloured paper.
Most of Lukova's work is done by hand, including illustrations and typography. Although she uses the computer to occasionally manipulate images, her insistence on hand drawing permeates her work with a wonderful liveliness and organic unity.
Trained at the Academy of Fine Arts in Sofia, Bulgaria, she began work as a poster designer for a theatre company in Bulgaria. Her evocative theatre posters have graced numerous stage productions in the US and Europe.
She is widely regarded for her editorial illustrations for The New York Times and has received commissions for her work from the Wall Street Journal, Time, Fast Company, Adobe Systems, Sony Music and Harvard University.
Lukova has won many awards including Grand Prix Savignac at the International Poster Salon, Paris, France; the Golden Pencil Award at the One Club, New York; ICOGRADA Excellence Award at the Poster Festival in Chaumont, France; and Honor Laureate at the International Poster Exhibition in Fort Collins, CO.
Solo exhibitions of her work have been held at UNESCO, Paris; DDD Gallery, Osaka, Japan; La MaMa, New York and the Art Institute of Boston. Her work is included in the permanent collections of the Museum of Modern Art, New York; the Library of Congress, Washington, DC; and Bibliotheque Nationale de France.
In 2009, her Health Coverage poster was in a prestigious exhibition during the Inauguration of President Obama in Washington, DC. Coming up in 2009, publisher Clay & Gold will release Speaking with Images, a new book about her work.