DESIGN: Vodka Art, Bottles Up!


Over the years the liquor companies have designed and commissioned some superb vodka art – from labels to print advertising campaigns, oversized outdoor sculptures to various bottle shapes and other embellishments. Not only has this enabled our bottles to be much more beautiful and unique, but this trend has helped support artists and given their work huge exposure – a good thing for all involved. The creative possibilities for this artistic partnership are unlimited and fun – able to be simple, yet eye-catching, with surreal elements and clean graphic design.

With New Year’s Eve fast approaching and the time for toasts, we thought it would be an opportune time to take a look at alcohol inspired art.

Top among these, maybe the first to commission the talents of fine artists, is Absolut Vodka. In 1986, Andy Warhol created the first of many artworks to be used in their advertising campaigns. Many of you may remember the fantastic iconic label, (below).

Andy Warhol label

Andy Warhol label

Absolut’s “Art Collection”, has been growing ever since and has a portfolio of over 800 original collaborations with works by artists including Damien Hirst, Louise Bourgeois and Francesco Clemente.

The Spiritmuseum

Absolut Vodka’s art collection remained in the hands of the Swedish government, which has provided a permanent home in Stockholm’s new Spritmuseum. The museum is located in Stockholm’s two remaining 18th-century naval buildings on the island of Djurgården.

Below is one example of the artworks on display, click here for more images from this fantastic collection.






Ron English

Pop surrealist artist Ron English worked with Absolut in Italy on a mural project, creating a huge artwork X-Ray Guernica  (based on Picasso’s Guernica), on the walls of an ex-slaughterhouse in Rome. He also produced a limited edition bottle, covered in his “Mostrum” graphic. (See both, below)


ron english vodka bottle



Yué Wu’s Circle of Life

For the launch of ABSOLUT Art-Stream, a part of the campaign at MADE in Berlin, Parisian artist Yué Wu created an animation and installation using 60 hand painted ABSOLUT vodka bottles. The artwork titled – “The Circle of Life”, is a wonderful  film about change, growth and rebirth.




Absolut Rock

Absolut Vodka launches an annual “Special Edition” vodka every year and in 2009/2010 the theme was “Absolut Rock”. Since rock and roll and electric guitars go hand in hand, and with both Hagstrom and Absolut Vodka being classic “Swedish” companies, a collaboration between the two was a natural match, and the cooperation began immediately. A design competition was called for nine artists to produce guitar designs, to grace the popular Hagstrom “Ultra Swede” model guitar.

The winning design and art (below) was created by Nina Vollmer, a young designer from Berlin. In regards to her entry in the Hagstrom design competition, she had one good reason for entering: “… I just wanted to design a guitar, at some point in my life”. 

Ultra Swede Absolut Vodka

The winning bottle design (below) by Natalia Brilli, came in a chic leather dress complete with rivets, full of rock attitude and heavy metal ambiance.






Kristall Vodka Art Deco Project

Some of the most beautiful art made recently are a number of posters made for famous Moscow vodka brand – Kristall. Art director: Boris Nadykto. To see more of these gorgeous posters, click here.

Bottle Composition 3



Tattooed Vodka

A new Swedish vodka designed by tattoo artist Aniela from Flash Fighters. Very reminiscent of Sailor Jerry tattoo designs, with a lighter, graphic feel.




Backbone Vodka

Johannes Schulz created a concept design for a vodka with backbone — a bottle with bones inside. The wide shouldered vodka bottle stands with a full spine and rib cage suspended in a clear glass bottle, a sign that the vodka has nothing to hide.

“Spine Vodka is a private project I started after my graduation of an international communication design school in Hamburg, Germany. A real drink for real men.”





Finlandia Vodka

In 2010, in honor of the 40th anniversaries of both Earth Day and Finlandia Vodka, Finlandia is released a limited edition charity water bottle series (below), featuring beautiful designs by Klaus Haapaniemi, a Finnish graphic artist.

fin bottles

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