Dugong, Manatee, Sea Cow
Dugong, Manatee, Sea Cow
Dugong, Manatee, Sea Cow
Dugong, Manatee, Sea Cow

Dugong, Manatee, Sea Cow

[sic], New York, New York, 1999

Description

The primary challenge was the subject matter itself. The manatee and its relatives are cuddly-looking creatures, but humankind’s treatment of them has been anything but cuddly. The mandate of the poem and the publisher was that there be no cuteness to the portrayal in the typography and illustration.


The solution is born out of the language and content of the poem. The language is of a peculiar 19th-century style—turning back on itself, using clauses to modify clauses to modify clauses, and a vocabulary suited to Victorian descriptions. The typography alludes to the period: De Vinne and a host of other typefaces are from that period. The poem refers to the geographic locations of the dugong, manatee and sea cow throughout, and so the design steals aspects of late-19th-century maps—line numbers undulating like latitude lines, a cordoned text block tucked low and toward the spine like a legend, pages lettered in circles rather than numbered.

Collections: 50 Books/50 Covers of 1999
Discipline: Book design
Format: Book

Credits

Design firm
[sic]
Art director/designer
Charles Nix
Illustrator
Stefano Arcella
Author
Arnold Klein
Production coordinator
Charles Nix
Trim size
9 x 9 1/4 inches
Pages
32
Quantity printed
500
Compositor
Charles Nix
Typefaces
Caslon Open Face, Engravers Bold Face, Monotype Grotesque, Usherwood Book, Bitstream De Vinne
Printer/binder
Oddi Printing (Iceland)
Paper
150 gram Munken Pure
Binding method
Smythe sewn, hardbound
Binding materials
Brillianta Cloth
Publisher/client
Tsimmes Editions
Loading...
Loading...