The Portland Stamp Company The Portland Stamp Company

Stamp No. 18Na Kim

Na Kim is a graphic designer based in Seoul and Berlin. Her unique visual language explores perception of shapes in space. She has initiated a series of exhibitions based on her monograph, SET. We met Na at her FISK Gallery show SET v. 16 in Portland and invited her to make a stamp. She made two!


Have you designed a stamp before?

It’s my first time. I’ve always loved stamps and wanted to make one. 


What was the most interesting or fun aspect of designing a poster stamp? What unique challenges did it present?

I enjoy playing with rules or systems that are already given. To find flexibility within limitation is part of my process and practice. The poster stamp has a fundamental structure — a certain format, perforation lines, which creates a relationship between an individual stamp and the whole sheet of stamps. This was very intriguing. And the quality of production of traditional stamps is a literal and symbolic gesture of nostalgia to analog communication methods. Imagining posting physical mail to someone with these stamps is very refreshing in this SMS era.   


Tell us about the art. Did you create something new for this stamp?

Visiting Portland for my exhibition at FISK gallery was great experience. The people, city landscape, and daily life in Portland was deeply memorable. To make a special mark commemorating this moment, I revisited my installation, SET v.16 at FISK, and unfolded it onto these two stamp sheets. In the color version, you will find the original graphic elements that are shown in SET v.16 — they were presented in a black painting on the gallery wall. In the black and white version, I extracted one part of the wall painting and inverted it, playing additionally with slanted perforation lines. Each stamp sheet and the separated stamps interact with each other and present an interesting perception of shapes in space, just like SET.


Anything else? 

Thanks again for your invitation of this project!

Na Kim artistamp 2 - digital printNa Kim artistamp 1 - riso printNa Kim pair of stamp sheets


The Artist Series

The Artist Series is an ongoing collaboration with invited designers, artists, and writers who create original work for an unusual form: the poster stamp. The stamps are printed on lickable, gummed paper and pinhole perforated by hand on our vintage machines. The sheets are signed and numbered by the artist, and released in a limited edition of 100. View full series.

Our upcoming releases include stamps by David Carson, Rebeca Méndez, and Kate Moross. Release date announcements will go out via our social networks and our email newsletter.