Honorary Appreciation Austria

Hannes Schüpbach
Cesare Ferronato – The Anatomy of Stone

Design: Raphael Drechsel
Printer: Holzhausen Druck, Wolkersdorf
Publisher: Verlag für moderne Kunst, Vienna
ISBN: 978-3-903153-46-2

Catalogue, biography, a collection of interviews? The works of Swiss sculptor Cesare Ferronato are given special treatment in this book: discussions between Ferronato and the younger artist Hannes Schüpbach offer an opportunity to experience the former’s world of thought and forms.
Although the book has its own pictorial focus above and beyond the sculptures, it is pervaded by the system of interconnecting text and image. In a two-column type area, the spoken words are divided into two type widths per column to highlight the dialogue concept. The high top edge displays the occasional notes — it is structured into four columns, with the outermost column reserved for the page numbers. Their prominent size could be described as functionally dubious — but then what is functional, anyway? All the types of text have substantially differing type sizes. The white space at the sides — regardless of whether it has been left unoccupied consciously or intuitively, or because it simply turned out like that — appears as if it has been created by joining together highly scaled sections. In these open compositions of image and text, the oversized page numbers certainly assume a specific function: that of a stabilising pacemaker. Purists may find them scandalous, but sometimes bulk is important. The textile cover — haptic seduction radiated by a rough textured fabric and smooth art paper — grabs your attention with its picture of a torso, worked into the deepened surface, because of the amorphous effect created by the outline of the artistically defined form.

Honorary AppreciationPoland

Anna Królica
Nienasycenie spojrzenia / Insatiability of the Gaze

Design: Ryszard Bienert
Printer: Drukarnia ARGRAF, Warsaw
Publisher: Centrum Sztuki Mościce, Tarnów / Instytut Muzyki i Tańca, Warsaw
ISBN: 978-83-927508-5-7 (Center), 978-83-941622-8-3 (Institute)

Specialist articles on dance and photography are grouped in the first section; an atlas of illustrations showing dance photography in Poland forms the second half of this impressive Swiss brochure. The book opens with the picture of a dancer on the inside of the cover flap, the blurred motion shrouding her actions like a veil. Multiple exposure with phase shift captures the temporal sequence in a single picture.
The spine of the innerbook has a black lining; the flat inner spine of the cover is white where the photo ends. The contents are listed on a narrower page, with grey structured paper projecting from underneath for the beginning of a chapter, itself narrower as well. Visible underneath, now across the full width of the format, there is an ornamental page with line grid. The titles of the articles are printed in ultra-light grotesque capitals whose height — despite the style being already narrowed — is reduced even further by several hundred per cent. It transforms the graphemes of a word into graceful, linear spatial investigations. Furthermore, there is alternation between matt white and satin gloss paper materials, the grey paper, and further series of narrower pages. In an unusual type area, the main column set in the middle is marked on both sides by vertical lines. These are broken by whole paragraphs; you could describe them as breaking rank. In the picture section, the positioning of the photographs on the pages creates such tension that it potentiates the dynamism of these choreographic depictions.

Honorary AppreciationRussian Federation

Tatyana Goryacheva, Ruth Addison, Ekaterina Allenova
El Lissitzky

Design: Evgeny Korneev
Printer: August Borg, Moscow
Publisher: Tretyakov Gallery, Jewish Museum and Tolerance Center, Artguide Editions
ISBN: 978-5905110-89-4

The mounted covers mutate into the wings of a constructivist folding object, creating protruding edges with the width of a finger. Standing vertically, they hold the square innerbook — suspended from the side, as it were. El Lissitzky — the short title is turned into a typographical image on the white, shining laminated board cover, with the “E” flush at the top with the red spine lining, the “l” running into the top edge, and the lettering of Lissitzky flush with the bottom edge of the innerbook. The typical elements of the monospaced font that is reminiscent of typewriting — the linear style, the extra-bold dots on the “i”s, the special sweep of the little “t” — touch on elementary design principles of the Russian avant-garde in the 1920s.
Inside this exhibition catalogue, six columns form the typographical framework of the double pages. Every second column contains the main text, interspaced with comments or pictures and captions. The combination of fonts aims to produce contrasts — an extended grotesque, for the distinctions a fine italic with sh, st and ct ligatures, and for the chapter headings the said monospaced font. Justification in the narrow columns looks remarkably compact; there seem to be fewer gaps than would be expected from this wide font. The white sections on the front edge colouring mark the chapters, with only the relevant pages blackened along their paper edges. The technical expertise necessary for such tricky edge colouring remains a mystery.

Honorary AppreciationJapan

Kentarou Tanaka
The First

Design: Hideyuki Saito
Printer: i Word
Publisher: Bonpoint Japon

This is usually too much to ask of marketing teams in the publishing world: the book title, author’s name and publishing signet are printed so small, in the lower half of the cover, and even embossed in silver foil. If the light happens to fall from the wrong angle, the title becomes completely invisible. It is an enchanting sight, with the dozens of animals, plants, houses and all the rest filling up the cover. The drawings are printed in two special colours on the pink cover. The red contours are not merely drawn around the images, they are produced by the artist sketching an area with striking internal structure on the predrawn areas, and leaving a vibrant border.
The first full-colour pages show colourful birds, followed by numerous line drawings. Gradually you feel yourself succumbing to the temptation to pull out your coloured pencils and see what the figures look like in certain colours. This children’s book can be called a colouring book — but not necessarily — although it seems reasonable — yet the pages are too beautiful to draw on… One more comment on the appearance: Thanks to the finely structured embossing of the paper on the cover, the sturdy matt inner pages and the extra-narrow ribbon bookmark, a child’s hands enjoy a haptic experience, noticing that the world of materials offers resistance and something moves if you put your hand on it — for example, so you don’t fail the first time you try to turn a page.

Honorary AppreciationPeople's Republic of China

Pan Wenlong, Gong Wei (photographer)
Old Trades of Jiangsu: A Glimpse

Design: Zhou Chen
Printer: Shanghai Artron Art (Group) Co., Ltd.
Publisher: Jiangsu Phoenix Education Publishing, Ltd
ISBN: 9787549973248

Jiangsu is now one of China’s economically strongest and richest provinces, with 11 cities of over a million inhabitants. What a contrast to this book, which presents 90 artisanal branches of trade from pre- and early industrial times. A thick wad of greyish brown paper, roughened on all sides, is held together on the left by rudimentary side-sewing. The ends of the string — also made of coarse paper — are pressed flat like dried flowers. The whole thing feels like a pliable pillow. Black-and-white photographs on the packing paper, and colour photos on ultra-thin, yellowy-white laid paper with fold-out pages, in a slightly smaller format, show people working on their crafts. In the interaction between perfect printing and haptic changes of paper, the pictures grant insights into civilisation techniques that were believed almost lost. It is a romantic view, although this term is initially foreign to the Far East. At the very least, a certain effusive pride renders homage to artisanship, whose refinement, quality and diligence could be intended as references to the prosperity of this Chinese province today. The brown packing paper is normally used to wrap foods; in this book it is used as base material for presenting the workmanship of old trades — a subtle reminder of how fulfilling it can be to earn your living through meaningful activity and by working with your own hands.