What we have here is a massively heavy slip case containing a band of cardboard in which is a monumental book block of sea photographs, all taken at Kijkduin, The Hague. The book has no text but simply sucks the viewer in towards the horizon. Grey, green, blue, violet, indigo, black, orange, pink: the changing, limitless palette of water, clouds and sky produces a fascinating rhythm which, give it long enough, has something of a hallucinatory effect. This ‘book-object’ is bound as a ‘flatbook’, a technique that ensures that all spreads lie fully open. It is constructed of 212 pages of sturdy 200 gsm paper, so it is also possible to set the book block down upright. The pages then form a roundabout of images. Photographer Bruno van den Elshout made the project possible partly by crowdfunding through voordekunst.nl, and it is obvious that he and designer/publisher Rob van Hoesel spent an enormous amount of time on it, arranging, moving and weighing things up with infinite dedication.
For one panel member the fact that some pages have more than one image went against the basic premise of the book. ‘You start off taking all photos from the same position and end up with a book in which the horizon is not on the same line from beginning to end.’
Otherwise the panel were impressed by this magnificent accomplishment, the richness, the perseverance in thinking the image through, and the pushing back the boundaries of what a book can be.
Bronze medal, Best Book Design from all over the World, Leipzig 2015