France /// Frankreich
The rust-coloured catalogue cover, dominated by a characteristic illustration of a black knife, arouses the curiosity of many viewers. An object that seems to be very exciting to look at further. What a cover! How daring, what contents might it enclose?
The so-called bio-monograph gives us insights into the work, and thus the life, of the French artist, sculptor and ceramist Valentine Schlegel. Attracted by the charisma of the book, it features a large iconography, archives, and texts by sculptor and Schlegel specialist Hélène Bertin. It forms a silent but fitting tribute to Schlegel, who can be considered one of the most important ceramists of 1950s. The layout plays a deliberately subordinate role. It gives the works of Schlegel the appropriate space. As is natural for good design, it remains almost invisible, but encourages the viewer to engage with the subject.
Without any hierarchy and designed in collaboration with friends of the artist, this body of work consists of objects of different sizes and uses, ranging from the fantastic to the mundane. Delicate captions accompany the numerous impressions.
Only one font size is used. Quite sufficient: One size fits all. The layout of the images seems to have developed intuitively, also comparable to the objects the artist created in her home. Schlegel´s artworks as sculptures are often inspired by nature. An extensive look at her sculpted interior objects and architectural elements in plaster, especially the numerous fireplaces she created, are also featured. We look over the artist’s shoulder through the book, watching undisturbed as she expands her ever-changing daily art practice and technical know-how, rounded off with the carved letters on the back cover of the publication.