The two most beautiful books are Dutch


The 33 Best Dutch Book Designs 2021 are known. At the international judging The Best Book Design from all over the World (Leipzig), the Dutch selection was awarded the two highest prizes:

• The Golden Letter, the award for the most outstanding book, goes to On the Necessity of Gardening, published by Valiz in collaboration with. Centraal Museum Utrecht (Laurie Cluitmans (final ed.), design: Bart de Baets; production Wilco Art Books)

• The Gold Medal goes to Met Stoelen, designed, made and published by Kuan-Ting, Chen, a third-year student at the Graphic Design Department at ArtEZ Arnhem.

Of the 328 books submitted, 33 books were awarded:
• 5 books belong to the category ‘prose, poetry, graphic novel and children’s book’:
Ana Pesoa – Mary John (Em. Querido’s), Henna Goudzand Nahar, Hedy Tjin – On the back of Bigi Kayman (Em. Querido’s), Alfred Schaffer – Zo heb ik u lief (De Bezige Bij), Bette Westera, Sylvia Weve – Seks is niks geks (Samsara), Annette Behrens, Carina Hesper – Toffe Peren: Het Kinderboek (Stichting Toffe Peren)
• Of the two major Bible editions in 2021, the Bible of the Dutch-Flemish Bible Society, designed by Studio Joost Grootens, was awarded.
• The design duo Haller Brun is best represented with three books: Shallow Waters (Onomatopee), Momentum of Light (Lars Müller Publishers), A Dance of Light and Shadow (Beppe Kessler).

Traditionally, the Best Dutch Book Designs are exhibited in the Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam in the autumn. At that same moment the catalogue will be published, this year designed by designer duo PutGootink.


The 33 Best Book Designs are:

Prose, poetry or graphic novels
Ana Pesoa – Mary John
Design: Planeta Tangerina (Joana Pardal), Marry van Baar | Production: Wilco Art Books (John Geurtsen), Wilco BV | Boeken & Tijdschriften | Uitgever: Em. Querido’s

Alfred Schaffer – Zo heb ik u lief, alle gedichten tot nu toe
Design: Michaël Snitker | Production: DPS, Wilco BV | Boeken & Tijdschriften | Publisher: De Bezige Bij

Design: SJG (Joost Grootens, Dimitri Jeannottat), 2K Denmark| Production: Royal Jongbloed| Publisher: Nederlands-Vlaams Bijbelgenootschap

Books for children and young people

Henna Goudzand Nahar, Hedy Tjin – Op de rug van Bigi Kayman
Design: Lyanne Tonk | Production: Wilco Art Books (John Geurtsen), Wilco BV | Boeken & Tijdschriften | Publisher: Em. Querido’s

Bette Westera, Sylvia Weve – Seks is niks geks
Design: Steef Liefting | Production: Wilco BV | Boeken & Tijdschriften | Publisher: Samsara

Annette Behrens, Carina Hesper – Toffe Peren: Het Kinderboek
Design: Jelle F. Post | Production: Drukkerij Raddraaier SSP | Publisher: Stichting Toffe Peren

Informative nonfiction

Femke Deen – De Norbertinessen van Sint-Catharinadal
Design: Willem van Zoetendaal| Production: Erik Fliek, robstolk®, Agia & Lith | Publisher: Lecturis collab Stichting Grote Kerk Breda, Stadsarchief Breda and Stedelijk Museum Breda

Hugo Engwerda, Timo Meester – Kladmuur. Pioniersjaren van graffiti in Groningen 1978 -1992
Design: Timo Meester | Production: Chemistry Printshop| Publisher: Stichting Kladmuur

Laurie Cluitmans (Head editor) – On the Necessity of Gardening
Design: Bart de Baets | Production: Wilco Art Books (Mariska Bijl) | Publisher: Valiz, Centraal Museum Utrecht

Joost Grootens – Blind Maps and Blue Dots
Design: SJG (Joost Grootens, Dimitri Jeannottat) | Production: NPN Drukkers, Boekbinderij Patist | Publisherij: Lars Müller Publishers

Art, photo and architecture books

Hans den Hartog Jager, Rudi Fuchs, Anna Tilroe – Beekman Paintings
Design: Irma Boom | Production: Zwaan Lenoir, Brepols | Publisher: Nai010

Henk Wildschut – Afstand
Design: Robin Uleman| Production: Marc Gijzen, Zwaan Lenoir, Brepols | Publisher: Henk Wildschut

Greg Nosan, Lisa Meyerowitz, Joseph Mohan – Ray Johnson c/o
Design: Irma Boom | Production: Zwaan Lenoir (Marco Kokkelkoren), Boekbinderij Patist | Publisher: The Art Institute of Chicago

Now You See Me Moria collective – Now You See Me Moria
Design: Raoul Gottschling, Christian Knöpfel | Production: LINKE, Rodi Rotatiedruk, NPN Drukkers | Publisher: Paradox, Now You See Me Moria collective

Karel Martens, Uranus
Design: martens & martens| Production: Beijing QL-ART Printing Co., Ltd. | Publisher: Roma Publications, IS A GALLERY

Anne Geene – Book of Plants
Design: Jeremy Jansen | Production: Jos Morree, Marc Gijzen, Wilco Art Books | Publisher: De Hef, Anne Geene

Kuan-Ting, Chen – Met Stoelen
Design: Kuan-Ting, Chen | Production: ArtEZ Arnhem | Publisher: ArtEZ Arnhem (Graphic Design Department)

Ton Grote – Eindhovenseweg 56
Design: Jeremy Jansen| Production: Marc Gijzen, Drukkerij Tielen, Boekbinderij Patist | Publisher: The Eriskay Connection

Here. A World Poem by Tishani Doshi
Design: Atelier Carvalho Bernau| Production: Drukkerij Tielen, Benelux Boekbinders | Publisher: Typotheque

Hiske Altena – Vital Mud
Design: Esther de Vries | Production: Marc Gijzen, Zwaan Lenoir, Agia & Lith | Publisher: Hiske Altena

Koen Taselaar – Rollable Ramblings
Design: Team Thursday | Production: Zwaan Lenoir, Boekbinderij Patist | Publisher: Jap Sam Books op initiatief van Block C

Fin Serck-Hanssen – Hedda
Design: Mevis &Van Deursen| Production: robstolk®, Abbringh| Publisher: Loose Joints

Natasja Kensmil: A Poison Tree
Design: Esther Krop | Production: robstolk® (Alex Feenstra), Brepols | Publisher: Alauda Publications i.s.m. Kunsthal KAdE

Masahisa Fukase – Kill the Pig
Design: Mainstudio (Edwin van Gelder, Christian Knöpfel) | Production: robstolk®, Boekbinderij Van Mierlo | Publisher: the(m) Editions-Sepchat Éditions, Ibasho

Thorsten Baensch, Norbert Schöbel – Von Ort Zu Ort
Design: Carel Fransen, Rob van Hoesel| Production: Wilco Art Books | Publisher: The Eriskay Connection

Jorge Méndez Blake – Lenguaje Desmantelado | Dismantled Language
Design: Mainstudio (Edwin van Gelder, Fabienne Müller) | Production: robstolk®, Boekbinderij Patist | Publisher: Inacabadas

Mary Magdalene. Chief Witness, Sinner, Feminist
Design: Esther de Vries | Production: Wilco Art Books (Benno Slijkhuis)| Publisher: Waanders Uitgevers, Museum Catharijneconvent

Bureau LADA – Shallow Waters
Design: Haller Brun | Production: Pantheon | Publisher: Onomatopee

Paul Cupido – 4 a.m.
Design: Akiko Wakabayashi | Production: robstolk® (Alex Veenstra), Agia & Lith| Publisher: Paul Cupido

Daan Rietbergen – Nespor
Design: | Production: Marc Gijzen, Pantheon, Grafische Afwerking Josuma | Publisher: Daan Rietbergen

Iwan Baan, Francis Kéré – Momentum of Light
Design: Haller Brun| Production: robstolk®, Boekbinderij Patist| Publisher: Lars Müller Publishers, Zumtobel Group

Erik Rietveld & Ronald Rietveld – The Landscape of Affordances
Design: Ricky Rijkenberg| Production: robstolk® (Alex Feenstra), Van Waarden | Publisher: Black Paper Press

Réka Fekete – A Dance of Light and Shadow
Design: Haller Brun | Production: Daan van Tulder, NPN Drukkers, Boekbinderij Patist| Publisher: Beppe Kessler