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The Alphabet Book – Kunstverein

Friday, February 15, 2019

The Alphabet Book – Kunstverein Publishing

(Designer – Marc Hollenstein)


The Alphabet book seemed an interesting choice among other publications that the Rietveld Library had acquired last year (2018). Namely because it is quite an odd book at first glance. The reason i do choose to describe the book is because it is very different than most books you might come across in a library. There are only eight pages, yet each of those pages is nearly 3mm thick and made out of cardboard. The book is slightly larger than A4. Another thing that sets this book apart is that there is no discernable title to the book; only the little tag that the library put on the book for identification purposes. You can also find the title on the Kunstverein website. What really strikes me about this book is that each page contains one image of a typeface. Each type face is from 1971 or 1972. All of the typefaces shown are not fonts you could really use for writing documents of any sort, but appear to be more applicable to creating a logo or potentially a banner of some kind. I also found out while doing some quick research on this book, that both the publisher (Kunstverein) and the designer (Marc hollenstein are both located in Amsterdam. The original idea for this series was not to create a book. The creation of a publication was a development initiated by Marc Hollenstein after having had a conversation with Glenn Lewis one (on of the artists in this publication). In 1971 Michael Morris and Vincent Tarsov invited a group of artists to create their own alphabet which is now the basis of the work shown in this publication.

Morris and Tarsov are both part of a network of Artists called image bank which is located in Vancouver, Canada.

Marthe Wery

Friday, February 15, 2019

Marthe Wery


I saw a forest green spine, it was worn down so much cracks and edges showed the plain white colour of paper. I thought to myself this book has gone through a lot. I picked it up and revealed the cover, it consisted of this same green, this forest green, nothing apart from the name Marthe Wery. All capital font in white the same white the cracks and edges revealed. I curiously flicked through, this tattered book comforted me like my grandparents, I felt accepted no matter how much knowledge I held. As I flicks through I saw a blur of red, blue then green. The same green as the cover. I then chose to start from the beginning and saw text, the text was in two columns covering the pages, some pages held photographs of art by the artist Wery and others a combination of both text and photographs. The majority of the photographs are in black and white and showed drawings or paintings. I never choose to read about the artists work when I go to see an exhibition and so I chose to follow my gut instinct and look at the artistswork without reading the text. I again felt a sense of comfort by the art, like I didn’t have any pressure to completely comprehend it, I enjoyed the pieces without having a real understanding of it, the dark charcoal drawings drew me in and then a red filled the pages with different tones of red on every page. Abruptly interrupted by grey text and photographs and then blue tones filled the next pages until again it was interrupted by text and photographs. Finally the comforting green filled the pages and I started to realise this was the book I wanted to write about. Have you ever felt as though you were invisible in this world or merely blend in?. This book felt like this to me however, even if you have felt like that, others might find comfort and gratification in you and this is how this book made me feel and it all started with that forest green and an unexplainable link to my grandparents.


Wednesday, February 13, 2019

The main reason I chose this book is because it is small and light. This advantage is not making me to use the book as a pillow to rest my head, but I carry it in my hand so that I can ventilate my head anytime.

Originally, the book is bounded with a hard cover, but it is covered with a soft non-glossy finished paper so that it looks as the book is dressed.

Before you open the book, you can see the outer side of the paper has colored yellow, orange and fluorescentpink as you can see the same layers on the book cover. As the book has the theme of the cocktail, when the book is opened, the colors are layered on both sides of the paper, and it surrounds the text as it spreads in the glass like a cocktail. Fun.

In the text, the shape of the little letter ‘g’ seemed to simulate a water droplet, and a fluorescent pink color was used for the emphasized.

This book was edited by Ryan Gander and Phil Mayer and designed by Abake with Delphine Bourit. I do not know any of them and actually I do not really curious who they are. But I am wondering if I participated in this book.

On the back cover of the book has the names of more people, including author, editor and designers, but the randomly arranged numbers are more interesting rather than names.

Another interesting thing is that the publication information is in the middle of the book, which is usually at the back or front of the book.

I have divided the composition of the book into five big categories. Images, publishing information, cocktail recipes, email and ingredients that is used for cocktails oh and the small profile of peoples who joined the book. Six.

The images are all different in size and layout, and the content is the same, but the contents are all corresponded to the cocktail recipes introduced later. These layouts allow me to cross the front and back of the book and engage me to participate more actively.



Library number: gand 5(218391)


Wednesday, February 13, 2019

Book: Power?… To Which People?!

Author: Jonas Staal

Graphic Designer: Laura d’Ors



I chose this book first of all because of its colour. The cover of the book is completely grey, except for the white letters that show the title and publisher of the book. The sides of the pages are grey as well, so that the book looks a bit like s stone or tile. I found this intriguing because it gives the book a different quality than other books, not sticking to the traditional division between pages and cover, but presenting itself as a whole.

When I took the book from the shelf, I noticed that it didn’t feel like paper or cardboard. The cover was made of a kind of rubber that feels smooth but at the same time rough, and that is very satisfying to touch. After stroking the book for around thirty minutes, I decided that this was the one my research should evolve around.

Another thing that struck me about it, was the way interpunction was used in the title. Instead of writing “Power…?”, so with the three dots preceding the question mark, it had been written as “Power?…” so with the question mark preceding the three dots. This is an uncommon way of writing and it immediately made me wonder why.

When flipping through the book, I noticed that there was a picture of a painting on page 52 that consisted of nothing more than a surface of the exact same grey as that of the book cover. I was curious what the connection would be between the outside and the inside of the book.

Although we had been told not to focus too much on the content of the book while making our choice, I couldn’t help but connect the title and the scraps of text I had read to the design right away. The greyness to me somehow directly related to the subject of power, the uniformity of it made me think that everything that was written inside there was somehow enfolded in the same grey mass, like our opinions and lives are enfolded in the structures of power that surround us.



Number: 21274

Art in Therapy

Wednesday, February 13, 2019

“Don’t judge a book by its cover”. This saying is quite contradictory with the assignment we got. When you choose a book without taking the content into account, it seems there’s not much left. How do you judge a title without taking its meaning into the equation? With this book, “Art in Therapy”, designed by Adriaan Mellegers, it was for example the size of the title that made me stop and look again.

You don’t get a lot of information on the cover of this book. You see the title, a shape, and the name of the artist is on the spine of the book. It’s a very minimalistic design, yet it’s still very effective. To me there’s quite an art in that, in making something with the bare minimum that still grabs your attention before you’ve even read anything. I would like to get better at saying more with less, so to me it seems a good start to study a book that does this quite successfully in my opinion.

I would like to talk about the colours on the cover of this book. It only has two colours, black (if you could call that a colour) and a strange pink. I really liked the look of this pink when I pulled this book out of the shelf, but I soon this discovered that it wasn’t the original colour, but a discolouration. Did the designer take this into account when designing the book?

Lastly, what intrigued me about this book is that it was filled with a lot of text, and not all of it was in the same font and size. I don’t know a lot about typography and its effects, and I would like to learn more. Why would you have two different typefaces for two languages? Why didn’t the designer line up the questions and answers in the two languages?


Art in Therapy

Designer Adriaan Mellegers

Artist Emmeline de Mooij

708.4 the 1






Monday, February 11, 2019

Without even reading what was actually written on the spine, the way it was presented was enough to draw my attention to the contents. The name of the artist and beside it the title of book; both in white but featuring different fonts, on top of the green fabric which decorated the spine in question. This continued on to the cover, featuring said text along with a single image of a cage in a white void.

Interestingly, the book acts as neither a biography of the artist, nor as a compilation of his works per say, but instead as a means of preserving the entirety of the artist’s workspace, which acted as his hub for creativity from 1970-2002, the archival process being supported by the Museum of Contemporary Art Antwerp (M HKA). As such, the book goes a long way in efficiently presenting everything that the artist had chosen to surround himself with in the given span of time; the impression is given that no piece of work is disregarded or wasted: images being presented in a variety of sizes and manners. Notes and sketches by the artist are also utilised as backgrounds for the text, with variations of the same concept being shown across two-page spreads. In comparison to the amount of images, the book is quite light on text, and even when featured it is made sparse by the placement of images between the bulk of information. Through this approach, the book is accessible in its presentation without sacrificing the merit of the material that it chooses to showcase

The transparency of the cover, followed by the consistency of the material within is what led me to picking this book.


Post-menopause – Rosemarie Trockel

Monday, February 11, 2019


The book was designed by Yvonne Quirmbach. In the book she introduces this element of a simple box within a text field. The content of these boxes starts out quite simple with the title of the text right at the first text in the book and then throughout the book she continues to expand on it and explores it further. What’s interesting to me is that while she explores and experiments with it (she puts different kind of content in it like pictures or footnotes) she is always regarding the ways it has been used before so it never becomes confusing or distractive. It is actually done in a quite subtle way, so many people who read the book probably won’t even notice it. There is a playfulness to the overall design that doesn’t reveal itself immediately. A few aspects I didn’t notice at all when I first looked at the book like that the book cover actually unfolds to a poster if you take it out. Even the way the works from the exhibition are presented seems very clean almost mathematic but actually there is quite a bit of variety in it. The book starts by presenting what it calls objects (pictures of some of the content of the exhibition) in a grid under a white background with all the pictures being square and the surrounding area of the objects in the pictures being a clean neutral background as well. Other than some of the pictures taking 4 squares of the 3×3 grid, this let’s call it monotony continues for this first part of the book. Then there is a break signified by a coloured page. Those occur throughout the book and separate the different parts. The next pictures that come afterwards are treated very differently. There the emphasis although the part of the book is titled XXXX seems to lie on presenting them as objects. The way it’s presented is more free, pictures are placed inside the page not adhering to the grid that was used before but it starts with graphicly simple square works and that retains the illusion that the aesthetic is maintained. Overall there seem to be a lot of interesting decisions and elements that can be researched and explored with this book.


library number: tro 5

martin – Next Nature

Saturday, February 9, 2019

I chose the book « Next nature », a book supported by the sandberg and designed by Mieke Gerritzen.

The design of the book is really interesting, not that much by the paper chosen, the format of the pages or the functionality , but more because of the colors chosen, as well as the fonts and basicly the whole visual identity. The name “next nature” reminds of this neo culture emerging because of new technologies and new medias. The design of the book makes me think of these internet pages where you find a lot of content with is a crazy amount of informations with different elements mixed together, with images repeted or put there without explanation. This is something that is well transcribed in the first pages and even the cover with this weird photo of a dog on the back and the multicolore design on the front. Even when you open the book, the first two pages are heavy repetitions of photography of dogs and the font « next nature ».

Something that is noticable as well is that the text in the book is a lot about new technologies and medias « in this world it is perhaps fitting that we can now – thanks again to our technologies – also manipulate the images of nature ». Most of the images chosen in the book are symbols you find in our society or famous logos remade with different colors, like the apple logo made as a pear with lgbt colors. This shows that one of the main topic of the book is the consumer society, something you find with the big quantity of informations you have in the book.


On a clear day you can see forever

Thursday, February 7, 2019


Author/designer: Jan Rothuizen

Nothing in particular about this book made me pick it out of the shelf. Had it not been sticking out of the shelf already I wouldn’t have noticed it among all the others. It has a simple glue binding and is the size of about a standard sketch book. The cover is a photo of a grey sky with an airplane, so the whole book is covered in a grey hue. But looking at it a bit closer, I started noticing the little details that made it interesting. The title is actually not a standard font like I initially thought, but each letter is instead hand drawn from a squiggly line. The book is filled with diary-style texts, simple line drawings and black-and-white photos. The drawings are often of a little character, possibly a self-portrait, with funny captions. The drawings were the first things I found interesting, before I started looking at the layout and the design. The photos are most often centered on the page, but sometimes allowed to fill the entire space. They also often appear in pairs, or corresponding to a text or drawing on the opposite page. The layout was probably decided to work within each spread rather than just the page. There’s also a lot of white space still allowed on the pages, so it never looks cluttered. The choice of font is interesting because at first glance it looks to be a regular font made out of hand written letters. But looking closer at the different ‘e’s and ‘g’s and ‘f’s, I realized that the whole thing is probably hand written. Unfortunately, his hand writing is almost too neat to be convincing, so this probably goes unnoticed most of the time.


Thursday, February 7, 2019





I chose an orange book, the size of a big holiday novel.

But with a cover much more animated than a novel. The title in bold, immediately intrigued me: I CAN NOT WORK LIKE THIS. The title is a point of view, an affirmation, which one wants to understand by opening the book.

The typography of the title and the first pages is impersonal, an imposing typo: Helvetica. But page after page, we discover a set of typography that become more and more specific and personal.

To start with a novel writing: the Times New Roman, then the typographic style of a typewriter: Adler, and finally manuscripts.

The paragraphs are changing too. At the beginning they are inserted in a serious and strict way on the right of the pages. Then the paragraphs come to life, and bend in all directions; others follow the shape of the images, or we find paragraphs that are divided in the same way as an agenda.

Each time the titles are put forward, they are much more imposing and have an important line with the paragraph.

Unlike typography and paragraphs, the images keep a conductive line throughout the book. It is the torn paper effects that surround the images that organize the book as a collage.

All images are in black and white. There are drawings, photos, collages, screen shots of Facebook conversations, and emails. There are also many scans of manuscripts, with arrows in all directions, to follow the reasoning of the creator.

The edge of the book is also noteworthy, because the page borders overlap the edge. There are black lines that remind the tears of the book.

Everything looks like a patchwork. Having been watching the graphic designer’s Instragram : Krysztof Pyda. On it we can see his collection of images he likes, we find this same idea in his book, a compilation of different things, past and present reunited.

I chose this book because I liked this way of entering the intimacy of the creator. Each page is a surprise, each time more personal than the previous one. It intrigued me like a diary.

A sheet of paper – Ocher Square

Thursday, February 7, 2019

The title « A sheet of paper » and the name of the artist, Remy Zaugg, appear centered, with a Times New Roman font. The book, in a rectangular format (23×29.5), has a hard cover with a plain ocher background, accompanied by a gray square in the center that hosts the title. At first glance, A sheet of paper does not appear to sollicitate any attention, without breaking away from a very classic aesthetic regarding exhibitions books.

However, by offering another look at it, one can notice singular formal protocols that unravel, through visual variations and repetitions, the boundaries between the so-called informative and artistic content. In fact, A sheet of paper has been designed by the artist and his wife, and can be considered as another piece, or a prolongation of his works : on the second page, we can see written « This book as well as the reproduced paintings were produced in collaboration with Michèle Zaugg ». Exhibition photographs are made by Hans Biezen.

While opening the book, we discover that the large ocher square from the cover multiplies itself in various ways : in the artworks presented, as in the architectural plans of the exhibition that are presented above the photographs. Thus, we can notice that the whole book is designed through an iterative process regarding this ocher square, that disseminate itself in every element presented (cover, artworks, architectural plans).

The same visual phenomenon is present with the textual content : the text takes place under the same fonts in the artworks as in the information shown. These variations of patterns and games between the information and the artistic production caught my interest and made me choose this book.

The Lost cent

Wednesday, February 6, 2019

When I was looking through books in the library, the spine catched my eye because of the ink like written title. So I took the book out of the bookcase and the coin on the cover stand out immediately, it’s not very common to use an actual object on a cover, but it made sense with the title. So now a bit curious for the inside, I opened the book. In the same place as the coin on the cover, was a hole through the whole book and they made use of the hole in all the different illustrations. I was surprised in the first place, but like the coin, it seemed like a well-considered choice. I went through the illustrations, some made more sense then others in comparison with the hole and arrived at the end of the book, were the first text appeared. The font (sans serif) looked pretty current in contrast to the story written by Charles Baudelaire who is more from back in the days. After the story from Charles Baudelaire a dialog came. The text was a bit weirdly designed in my eyes. The margin between text parts and the left side of the paper varied from part to part. I think the designer made this decision because it is a dialog, but still I never saw it before like this. The last page came and I discovered the graphic designer; Arthur Roeloffzen. Funny enough I read the text on the back cover last, and the content in the book itself came together.

Library number: onn 3

BROKEN MUSIC 708.4 rec 1 (30165)

Tuesday, February 5, 2019

The book ”broken music” is designed by Rick myers. When I was in the library i noticed a pile of newly books stacked on a table. They looked completely fresh and untouched. I know we had to select a book that was newly in, so the chance of them being new was quite big. I could look around the books and quite quickly i came upon 2 books about music and art. Records by artists & Broken music. The records by artist first pulled my attention cause i was interested in the topic. Which great artists also made music and how would it sound? I already saw a cover of an dali LP. But then when i looked in the second book (broken music) i was immediately drawn in by the nice design. It also wasn’t clear to me that it was actually about the same topic (artists music) as the one before. The cover of the book has no title which is something i still dont really like. I don’t know if this is because i am used to books with the title on the front cover or that i just don’t like it and think that the book is laying with the wrong side on the table… Apart from the title, the cover has a nice image which is intriguing and brings questions.  In the design of the book the text is mostly normally arranged. There is a nice use of sometimes full images on pages and sometimes multiple smaller ones. The way of using negative space and placing of larger objects is nicely done throughout the book. The designer Rick Myers is for as far as i can find an designer as artist. I have the feeling that you can kind of feel the artist touches on the first page. There is a little LP on this page which has some broken string music made for the book (quite nice). On rick myers website there is almost no information of any visual work. The visual work i found is with text, quite graphic. For the rest only talks, performances and other things he has set up.

BROKEN MUSIC 708.4 rec 1 (30165)

AT TWILIGHT // simon starling

Sunday, February 3, 2019

When the teacher was explaining us in the Rietveld library to choose a book that the library obtained last year to eventually write about the design of it, I couldn’t really focus as there was this book sticking out on the shelf of which i thought i liked the texture. I went to have a look at it. As the teacher’s voice faded, the book cover became clearer. Turned out that it didn’t look like how i thought it did, but after going through the rest of the library, I still preferred this one. 

What made the book catch my eye was first of all that it was wrapped in plastic, as if it’s something really precious. And secondly it was a, I thought, white book that had brown bakery paper around it, as if it was handmade. This wasn’t the book though, and neither did it have brown bakery paper around it; I think it’s an extension of the actual book. The reason i do is because this “extension” has the form of a newspaper which makes it seem less important than the book that was also inside the plastic. Also in this newspaper there’s mostly big pictures shown, that probably aren’t the subject of the book but are there to support the context of the book.

The book itself has a very minimalistic appearance, brown matte hardcover with black letters and three lines. But, when you open it, the first page is a very bright purple paper. After that, for the first half of the book it has brown paper and a often used font. Turns out it’s a play: probably the reason to choose a easy readable font and why the text looks well structured over the pages. The second half of the book has white pages and a more playful appearance. The font comes across less mature to me and also there’s a lot of pictures, even scanned in papers with written notes on it in this half of the book. I find it quite interesting how these simple choices changed the book into something special.

first impression of AT TWILIGHT // Simon Starling (star2)

ross, m 1

Saturday, February 2, 2019

The book, Ethical Actions: A Critical Fine Art Practice seems to be divided into three sections.
The first bit appears to be essays about the artist by other theorists or/and artists. For each essay there is a lot of space given to the title, the name of the people writing it and a photo which seems to be of a piece or an artwork related to the content of each essay.
The first spread before each essay, introducing individual writher with a name of the author and the photograph, are all design in the same way. The essays themselves on the other hand are either placed vertical, situated in the middle of each page or horizontal, spread over two pages. Some of the essays also have photographs intertwined in the text.
In the exact middle of the book there is a bunch of red pages. On these pages is a piece or an essay written by the artist. The pages on the inside of the cover of the book are also red. So in a way it is like she, the artist, runs through the book. Like a red thread. With the red pages opening, closing and centring the content.
In the second half, the third section of the book, are photographs of works by the artist. It seems to be more informative and is very clearly sectioned. It’s easy to find what the reader might be looking for. A summary of all the works with small pictures and a short text that seems to be information about each artwork. Then the paper changes from matte to slightly more glossy and the photographs of the works are printed bigger so the reader gets the opportunity to observe them.
The book is mostly printed on matte pages including the cover. The font is in the main the same and very approachable to the reader.
Between each section there is enough space that gives the reader time to contemplate or appreciate the content throughout the book highlighting the essays and the artists work as separate peaces.
In a way the book is designed in a very accessible way.

ross, m 1

my long lost error 404 (sad ballad)

Tuesday, December 18, 2018

Searching for broken links on the world wide web.
The question is how to do that, when a broken link is not usually something you look for, but something you find when you need it the least.

We were looking for the parts of the internet, old and forgotten, where no IT-guy would ever come back to clean up old links. We used random keywords as “blogger” and “star” or “dogs” searching for old blogs from the late 90’s not a lot later than the new millennium.
With this method we came across a lot of content long lost in the www. We collected screenshots from these sites that had dead links, also allowing them to once again have a new life in another part of the internet.
Also we saved the search history to show the paths we walked towards the broken links.
At last, from all this digging for dead links, a song came to life.
In the lyrics of the song (which are included in this blogpost) we reflect on the broken links, how we found them and most importantly the content we never got to see.

Soon the actual song will be released.. stay awake and keep an eye out for your soundcloud feed.


Hello old blogs
We are revisiting you
We are looking for you (Where AARE you)
The search is hard and difficult
The Road is long and bumpy (Uuhuhuhuhuh)

To find one piece of gold in the Wild Wild web
(I’m an internet cowboy in the Wild Wild web)
(Searching for broken links)
(Lost in the cybernet)

My long lost error 404

You caught me by surprise
And then i wanted to click on this link
But i can’t
It’s a broken link

I’m an internet cowboy lost in the wild wild web…. ….

Oooh broken link you caught me by surprise
The connection is lost what should I do?
Everything is lost

Lara, I found you by typing “blogger” and “psychic” in google
I chose the golden years of 1997 and 1998 for the search resultsss

What are thinking about
What are you’re thoughts
Why are you so sad
I’m a cowboy looking for you, My long lost link

One small star, I rise up softly for a new hunt
The poem 224 you did not work
You were lost in the void In the title of one small star
“Pardon me deserts that I don’t rush to you spearing a spoon full of”

I found you by typing blogger and star
I wrote/keyword “blogger” and “hotline” found this weird blog
Another broken link
Another lost story
The men wearing suits and pink letters of a tele company

Who are you
Where are you from
Where are you now

I need you!!!!

Under a one small star the cowboy hunts for a broken link
The day is done and the world of the wild wild web is lost

a comfy break

Monday, December 17, 2018

In the studying of links a peculiar feeling comes to mind

links are not that old yet, the internets isn’t that old yet. These portals have only existed for short periods of time. Still portals decay. Rot, rotting. Try and make a difference, it won’t happen.

The internet is not our own but rather a new dimension. As Decartes pleaded that the mind and body are on different planes of existence, the internet exist on a third plane functioning on its own. Or perhaps, the internet exists in the mind plane
settled within our own consciousness

instead of being connected by the amygdala, it connects through the eyes. Receptors receive, Sensor sense, the mind connects it all and files it away.


As humans we demand connection.

We see faces in images and foggy streets even if there is no person,
this nature prevents us from tolerating link decay

We click, we ask, we want.

In the moment we stumble across a broken link the mind gets stuck,
it wants to jump the portal but falls in a black hole.
Through the chasing of perfection and wholeness in daily life the brain cuts off when it cannot complete the link. The chain ends. This is an unsatisfactory experience.


To change the stigma of broken links and erase their oppression by capitalist society we will introduce a comfortable link,

 a nice place, a home, time to take a break…

A comfy break.

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