Olle Eksell is well known for his advertising illustration, book jackets and playful packaging design. He first studied engineering and later decided to become a graphic artist. He began his career as a window decorator in 1935 and later studied under Hugo Steiner, between 1939 and 1941. Steiner had previously fled the Nazis and escaped to Stockholm from Prague. During the war, Eksell worked on various commercial projects at Ervaco, a Stockholm based advertising agency (between 1941 and 1946), before setting up as a freelancer soon after. In 1946, Eskell moved to the USA to further his design studies for a year at the Art Center School in Los Angeles.
He contributed a number of articles, illustrations and pieces in newspapers and magazines from 1952. Between 1956 and 1958, Eksell designed for a number of industrial firms, designing packaging, press advertisements and exhibition stands. He oftern participated in design exhibitions around the world and his book Design – Economy, printed at Björkmans, was awarded a silver medal in Leipzig 1965. One of his most well-known published works is Corporate Design Programs, published in 1967. Olle Eksell was a president of the Alliance Graphique Internationale in Sweden and was active within the whole spectrum of the graphic field, specialising in creating corporate identity programs for banks and larger companies.
“Only too often in the advertising field are the inventive talents of an artist wasted by advertisers who demand, say, the realistic portrayal of a tube of toothpaste whose appearance is already familiar to everybody. They forget that the ultimate purpose of every advertisement is to transmit a message to the prospective client, to whom the advertisement must make an immediate appeal and who should be persuaded to study it with care. An advertisement which does not as much as irritate cannot be effective.”
Graphis 38, 1951,