Dossier Fernand Baudin

Fernand Baudin (1918-2005) was a belgian typographer, or “typographiste” as he liked to call himself. Teacher, author and lecturer, his extensive study focused on the history and teaching of writing and publishing.

Drawing from Fernand Baudin’s collection kept in the rare books and manuscripts section at the Université libre de Bruxelles, this Dossier Fernand Baudin – published for the fifth edition of the Fernand Baudin Prize, prepared by Coline Sunier & Charles Mazé, and launched on the occasion of PA/PER VIEW, at WIELS, Brussels, March 22, 7.30pm – gathers texts written or translated by Baudin, previously unreleased or published in various journals, or read in conferences, covering a period going from 1958 to 1998. Presented in a chronological order, this selection of texts conveys a panorama of his various activities, the ideas he developed and advocated, and gives a glimpse on the network of friendly and professional relationships Baudin established during his entire career.

Through their chronology and the history they depict, the fac­similes naturally offer an insight on the technical evolutions in the field of the graphic industry, a particular concern for Baudin. When taken as a whole, they allow highlighting Fernand Baudin’s position on the role of writing in the printing process, from the author’s draft to the final, published edition via all the intermediary stages. Specifically created for this publication, Fernand Baudin Bille and Fernand Baudin Feutre are digital interpretations of Baudin’s “ballpoint pen” and “felt pen” handwriting.

This Dossier Fernand Baudin refers to the Dossiers prepared by Fernand Baudin for the Association des Compagnons de Lure between 1969 and 1975. These Dossiers include documents and contributions selected by Baudin. Each opus is dedicated to a single subject or a single theme, such as writing or layout. In Dossier Layout (1972), Baudin gathers and annotates a selection of working documents sent by graphic designers and typographers. This method was employed in a separate section of the Dossier, to present the nine books awarded this year with a Fernand Baudin Prize.

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