Not an ordinary monograph

Author: Hugues Boekraad
Title: My Work is not My Work — Pierre Bernard — Design for the Public Domain
Publisher: Lars Müller Publishers
Year: 2008
ISBN: 978–3-03778–087-9

 

I’ve just begun skimming through this book, which I find quite interesting. The Preface opening clearly explains that This book is not an ordinary monograph about a designer: it is about the contribution made by a particular designer to the quality of the public domain.

It was written at the request of the Praemium Erasmianum Foundation to mark the award of the Erasmus Prize 2006 to Pierre Bernard. The Erasmus prize is a European culture prize, and the book accordingly not only looks at the aesthetic qualities of Bernard’s oeuvre but also examines its cultural, social and political significance.

Pierre Bernard is the co-founder of the design collective Grapus (1970–1990) and is now leading the Atelier de Création Graphique in Paris. The book presents and analyses sixteen projects for the public domain, divided into six main areas: Politics, Social, Cultural, National heritage, Science and Public Space. I very much like the poster for a cultural festival in Martigues in 1986. The imagery is simple and effective:

bernard030-small.jpg

(This image is © Pierre Bernard)

But this is just a small sample; the book is full of many other, even more compelling images. Definitely worth of attention and deep delving, starting from the introductory section, Visual rhetoric and ethics.

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About Riccardo Mori

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