To celebrate the 250th anniversary of Beethoven’s birth in 2020, a major exhibition about the musician and composer opened at the Bundeskunsthalle Bonn, organised in cooperation with the Beethoven-Haus. For the design concept of the publication, we felt that a sensuous feel was important. We also wanted to incorporate temporal interruptions and bridges to reflect the complexity of Beethoven’s identity as a composer, as well as all his historical and contemporary, including pop cultural references. The book, which was meant to function independently of the exhibition as a collection of essays, is ordered in five chronological chapters, where each features a different spot colour. The coloured typeface meets colourful pictures. We also commissioned five illustrators to create a portrait of Beethoven, resulting in a multifaceted and contemporary portrayal of the composer. Classical elements, such as centred footnotes and justified text, are intermingled with the special colour and illustrative concept. The contrast that defines Beethoven’s music was also important to us for the cover design. A glossy book jacket encases rough grey cardboard that is embossed with red lettering but otherwise unadorned. Like piano keys, the open spine reveals its multi-layered content, structured by colour.
Schönste Deutsche Bücher 2020, Stiftung Buchkunst
Year • 2019
Client • Bundeskunsthalle Bonn
Media • Publication (23 x 30 cm, 264 pages, hardcover with dust jacket)
Illustrations • Isabella Cotier, Raby-Florence Fofana, Sebastian Gögel, Amelie Göppel, Anna Haifisch
Publisher • Wienand Verlag