Natascha Libbert

I Went Looking for a Ship

This book started off as an assignment to document the construction of the fourth sea lock near IJmuiden, gateway to the Port of Amsterdam. When it’s finished it will be the world’s largest. However, artist Natascha Libbert lost her way in glorious fashion. The book documents – in photographs, diary entries, lists and observations – Libbert’s wrestling with the unphotographable object and the equally unfathomable phenomenon of worldwide maritime trade. She goes every which way – underwater, where divers search for unexploded bombs from the Second World War, in the nearby dunes, in bunkers, to rusting hulks, and eventually in Norway on a ship picking up a cargo of rock whose rosy colour adorns the book’s cover.

The countless loose ends, the passing associations and the frustrations of the artistic process are the building blocks for a book that as it were allows itself to be made by the colours and textures that Libbert came across on her artistic and literal journey: pinkish crushed stone, orange overalls, rust, silver-grey sea, rocks, yet more foaming seawater, concrete. The book’s underlying grid reflects the motion of ebb and flow, or the heaving waves of the ocean (which we have already encountered in Glaz). The colour combinations are magnificent, thanks not least to the attention paid to them by lithographer Marc Gijzen and book producer Jos Morree, but also to the fine picture editing by designer Michaël Snitker, who was also responsible for the choice of four different papers in white, black, grey and again pink, and the mineral quality of the metallic pink cover material (a reference to the pink crushed stone). This is a book about the many shortcuts afforded by the artistic process, but also about the beauty of chance finds and associative, or conversely analytical, links, and the ability of those involved to bring all these aspects together to create an artistic and graphic gem.

Edition: 2018
Release date: September 2018
Language: English
Translator: Billy Nolan
Final editor: Billy Nolan
Picture editor: Michaël Snitker, Natascha Libbert
Photographer: Natascha Libbert
Artist: Natascha Libbert
Publisher / commissioner: The Eriskay Connection, Breda
Available through: Webshop
Designer: Michaël Snitker (Amsterdam)
Lithographer: Marc Gijzen, Voorburg
Printer: Full-color: GrafiPlaza; Duotone: Lenoirschuring, Mijdrecht, Amsterdam
Binder: Brepols, Turnhout (BE)
Producer: Jos Morree (Fine Books), Weesp
Dimensions: 205 × 300 x 10
Amount of pages: 160
Number of copies: 800
Retail price in euros: € 32
ISBN: 978 94 92051 38 7
Font and foundry: Univers (Linotype), Century Schoolbook (Monotype)
Binding style: Otastar with flaps
Paper interior: 100gsm Munken Lynx Rough, 135gsm Curious Black Matter Truffle, 80gsm Pop'set Storm, 80gsm Clairefontaine Trophée Pastel Roos, Arctic Paper | Antalis, Igepa
Cover material: 270gsm Curious Black Matter Truffle, 285gsm Stardream Rose Quartz, Arjowiggins, Igepa
Other technical features: foil stamping in white Colorit 911 (KURZ) by KuiperDonse