Yves Klein: With the Void, Full Powers
Yves Klein: With the Void, Full Powers
Yves Klein: With the Void, Full Powers
Yves Klein: With the Void, Full Powers
Yves Klein: With the Void, Full Powers
Yves Klein: With the Void, Full Powers
Yves Klein: With the Void, Full Powers

Yves Klein: With the Void, Full Powers

Walker Art Center, Minneapolis, Minnesota, 2010

Description

Project brief: This catalogue accompanied the exhibition Yves Klein: With the Void, Full Powers, the first retrospective of the artist in the United States in nearly 30 years. In addition to illustrating works within the exhibition, the catalogue also served as a complement to the show, with essays by Klein scholars, texts by Klein himself and archival photographs of the artist.

pproach: The challenge of the cover was to find something representative for an artist whose broad practice was difficult to nail down to a particular image or work. Klein was interested in how people experienced art beyond its context in the gallery, how it elicits emotions, physical reactions and multiple interpretations. By stripping away the details on the cover like the title, imprints and other information, the book is transformed into an abstract object, blurring the distinction between a publication and a conceptual form, free of (or open to) meaning. Saturating the cover and book edges in International Klein Blue (IKB) activates the form with its particular ultramarine energy, suggesting how his blue monochromes are experienced. The result is a mysterious blue object that opens to reveal work in wildly various media, many of which were precursors to ideas like conceptual art, installation art, performance art and minimalism.

In developing the content for the book, a group of texts by Klein were included, ranging from musings about the concept of kitsch to the power of silence. A large number of archival images were used throughout the book, and in its “Album” section, showed Klein in many different situations from parties to performances. Together, all this documentation helped to bring Klein alive within the catalogue, his own voice and physical presence complementing the works in the exhibition.

Effectiveness: We definitely consider this a success from a production standpoint. IKB is a notoriously difficult color to reproduce (for its brightness, density and depth of color) and many Klein books before this have dealt with it with mixed results. With help from our printers, we custom-mixed our blue to match actual IKB pigments we had on hand at the Walker, and they provided wet proofs throughout the whole process to make sure everything was as accurate as it could be. Our most important sub-client, the Klein Archives, remarked on how close we had come to capturing the blue. In addition to the production challenge, we are very happy with the pacing of the book and the overview it provides of Klein’s career. We hope it will become one of the most treasured of Klein’s monographs.

Juror Notes

The exterior is exactly what an Yves Klein book should look like while the Peignot-like typeface and finely organized interior present the artist’s work well.

Collections: 50 Books/50 Covers of 2010
Discipline: Book design
Format: Book, Book cover

Credits

Design firm
Walker Art Center
Creative director
Andrew Blauvelt
Designer
Dante Carlos
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