Each year, the Swiss Federal Office of Culture conducts the competition The most beautiful Swiss books, building on the competitions’ long-standing history since its launch in 1943 at the suggestion of the distinguished graphic designer Jan Tschichold.
The annual selection of the most beautiful books is showcased in a catalogue. This year’s catalogue forms volume 2 of the Past / Present / Future trilogy conceived by graphic designer Laurenz Brunner and literary critic Tan Wa?lchli. While last year’s catalogue (The Past Issue) was concerned with the historical aspects of the book, they have aimed at achieving a rather more contemporary format and content for this volume, concerned as it is with the Present.
The catalogue serves as a platform for critical discourse and debates about book design and production and is made up of the three principal elements:
– The in-depth Interview with the Jury, conducted just after this years’ jury session, and concerned with the most crucial issues that came up during the jury process.
– The various Essays by critical design professionals and theorists from around the world are aimed at further exploring these themes.
– Finally, the detailed Jury Reviews are aimed at offering a concise rendering of the jury’s verdict, as well as presenting visual material as well as input from designers gleaned through questionnaires which were conducted with them.
The selection of the most beautiful Swiss books is exhibited each year at the Applied Arts/Design Museums in Zurich and Lausanne. This year, they are not only exhibiting the selection of award-winning books but have instead chosen to present all the books submitted into the competition – 395 books in total. Furthermore, the 32 award-winning books will be travelling to various cities abroad, including, among others, Berlin, London, Paris, Amsterdam, Brussels, Riga, Warsaw and Birmingham.
4th – 12th September, at do you read me?!
24th September – December 12th 2009, at Centre culturel suisse
25 – 29 October 2009
- Sunday, 25 October, 7 pm, The books are back in town, Opening party, Books, drinks, music,
- Thursday, 29 October, 7.30 pm, Superlatives in book design, Round table discussion with members of the jury and experts from the field of book design,
at Café oto
Evtl. New York Book Fair