Bar Von Pappe: Berlin’s Duchess of Illustration

I meet Berlin graphic artist and illustrator Bar Von Pappe, aka Jenny Boidoi, at her cosy studio-home in trendy Neukölln. She greets me warmly and ushers me into the kitchen, where she presents a mouth-watering array of cakes from her favorite local bakery. I am immediately charmed.

Settling down with some kaffee and kuchen (so Deutsche), Jenny reveals that she is a true Berliner and has lived in this amazing city her whole life, a rare breed indeed. I ask if she has ever been tempted to move, to which she replies “Yes, but Berlin is so special. I went to London for a scholarship for just a month; living and working in Brixton was so expensive and hard!” A feeling many of us can relate to.

Jenny Boidoi Bar Von Pappe In the studio: Jenny Boidoi in her cosy studio where she produces her work. Photo: Chris Phillips 

Currently studying communication design, Jenny started her project as Bar Von Pappe documenting Berlin’s streets last year. I ask how the name came about and she replies, “There’s a proverb in German, ‘von pappe’ which means it hasn’t got a very good quality, it’s cheap; that’s why paper and cardboard is very cheap. To me, ‘cardboard and paper’ are very beautiful and precious; that’s why I thought why not ‘Von Pappe’, and ‘Von’ is a name which is very noble. I chose ‘Bar’ because of Berlin. My name is a bear which is made of card!”  

| Continued on Page 2 |