Fully Booked: Cover Art & Design for Books. 2008

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Fully Booked: Cover Art & Design for Books. Gestalten Verlag, Berlin, Germany, 2008. 262 p.

Is a design book about book design also containing six essays, three apiece by Katherine Gillieson and Maria Fusco, one of which is an essay about the difficulty of producing a book on books. Phew. As with all of Gestalten’s output, Fully Booked is a well-produced, finely printed and sturdy affair – regardless of the content, their publications never fail on the production front. The only oddity is the rather boring cover, which I can only put down to the difficulty of trying to outdo any of the examples within the book and retreating to the neutrality of cardboard and linen, the raw materials of a hardback. The odd cut of the linen providing a kind of visual gag of stripping away the outer clothing of a book. The other quirk is that the book is printed with the end in the middle. One half of the book deals with the nature of books as an art object and explorations of the form of the book itself. Turn it around and the other half of the book is concerned with the design of book covers and layouts. Think of it as the book as art and the art of the book.

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