Wiel Arets. Autobiographical References

Book coverWiel Arets. Autobiographical References
Book coverWiel Arets. Autobiographical References
Book coverWiel Arets. Autobiographical References
Book coverWiel Arets. Autobiographical References

A great book – something with much to offer, quite apart from the content. Clever the way with all the manifest design decisions the overall result is robust and the content retains its clarity. Some panel members saw this as proof of good breeding, but there were those amongst us who thought there was rather too much design for its own sake – that this was too much a case of the book as a gadget.

Be that as it may, there is plenty of structure here. Most obvious are the strips cut out from the tops of the pages, effectively leaving tabs that are continued for the length of a chapter: combined with several colours of paper these make an unusual, almost sculptural impression.

The cover consists of paper folded double, which gives it a degree of stiffness and contributes to the agreeable feel of the book. Its design is purely typographic: fat beige and brown letters against a black background, the lines of the title broken off to serve the interests of the design – OK, so reading it does take a small effort. The names of the architect and the author, in a more subdued tint, escape this abrupt treatment.

Inside, the book is clearly laid out, with intermediary pages in primary colours (nicely carried through to the edges) and has effective, uncluttered typography making for easy reading, and with the occasional clever little invention.

Throughout the book the illustrations are in black and white except for the first eight and last six pages, where there are full-page colour bleeds of a different character, more atmospheric. And so we are taken on an adventure by the designer.

Edition: 2012
Language: English
Final editor: Robert McCarter
Publisher / commissioner: Birkhäuser, Basel (CH)
Designer: Irma Boom Office (Irma Boom, Sanne van de Goor)
Lithographer: Lecturis, Eindhoven
Printer: Lecturis, Eindhoven
Binder: Patist, Den Dolder, Makk, Soest, laser tabs by Lecturis, Eindhoven
Dimensions: 150 x 220 x 40
Amount of pages: 536 p.
Number of copies: 2,000
Price: € 54.50
ISBN: 978 3 0346 0811 4
Font and foundry: Interstate, Simple
Binding style: unsewn soft cover, cover folded in the American style
Material: 120gsm Revive 100 Natural Uncoated, 120gsm Reviva Color, various colours (interior), 120gsm Gustav Wasa, brown (cover)