Module 10 Reading: SHV Thinkbook

Dec 04

My eyes were immediately drawn to the SHV Think Book in this week’s module–I knew I needed to find out more about it. Meggs’ History of Graphic Design briefly touches on its origin, but does not really explain what makes it exemplary.

irma2_grandeAs the book states, Irma Boom developed the Think Book over five years, and its intent is to communicate¬†the company’s history over the hundred-year span of 1896 to 1996. She worked in collaboration with art historian Johan Pijappel to ensure its accuracy and traveled to Amsterdam, Paris, London and Vienna during her research.

What makes this book a piece of art is not just its format: Boom uses a series holes in the beginning of the book that get progressively smaller to communicate the unknown future. Once the holes stop, the history begins. Her narrative is told through pictures, text, patterns, and color to create an experience for the reader. She did not provide a table of contents or number the pages, since the book itself is a journey.

tumblr_ni2tofvjar1rsqyibo1_400Irma Boom is still publishing books, and her method is just as amazing as her most famous book. She creates tiny versions of the books she is designing so she can see how her ideas work with the structure of the books. One of her most recent designs was deemed the most beautiful book in the world at the Liepzig Fair.


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