This diligently produced catalogue overview of the work of German artist A.R. Penck, who died in 2017, was in 2020 recognised as one of the 25 Schönsten Deutschen Bücher, thanks to the work of the publisher, which has its origins in Germany. We noted with some satisfaction that the other links are almost all Dutch.
The good-looking book block has been given an index function through the use of various colour sections – cunningly printed in even colour and thereby indistinguishable from coloured paper – and it is only the coloured pages that contain explanatory text, with the images occupying the white/whiter pages. Despite this dogmatic structure, the resulting pattern has an attractive rhythm. The playfully designed table of contents allows the book to be used as a guide while strolling through the exhibition halls and past the showcases, though the book’s sizeable volume hints that this was perhaps not the intention after all.
One aspect that struck us as curious is the screen-printed thermal paper used for the cover: a strange choice in our opinion. And not an entirely happy one – perhaps this is the reason that the paper has started to become a little lumpy. Nevertheless, this is a solid, tactile book, and one that would grace the oeuvre of any artist.