Designing the book The Forest/La foresta gave us the chance to work side by side with the author Riccardo Bozzi and the illustrators Valerio Vidali and Violeta Lopiz. The production of the book took 4 years of ongoing dialogue among the publisher (in New York, USA), author (in Milan, Italy), illustrators (in Berlin, Germany), graphic designer (in Modena, Italy), photolithographer (in Verona, Italy) and printer (in China). The book The Forest/La foresta has travelled thousands of miles from West to East, and comes to life after an extensive work of discussion, research and experimentation.
Our desire was the same as the authors’: we wanted to preserve the complexity and peculiarity of the original project by developing printing and binding techniques that reflect these features. This led us to choose a Japanese-style binding made of gatefolds, cutouts and embossing, which was the most suitable one for the complex structure of the interiors.
However, this complexity doesn’t show from the book cover, which doesn’t have any copy (in the original edition) and is wrapped in a vellum cardstock that reproduces a delicate play of overlays. The result is a surprise for the reader, who page after page enters the forest and goes through it step by step as the story unfolds.
We left ample space to illustrations, and kept to a minimum the graphic design elements. For body copy, we used Miller by Mattew Carter from Carter and Cone, an elegant and timeless font.
“I wanted readers to experience the same thrill that I experienced when I read the first draft. This is why the book cover doesn’t hint to anything. It simply makes you wish to open the pages and let yourself go to being surprised and wandering through The Forest, a journey through the metaphor of life.”
– Francesco Ceccarelli (Art Director, Bunker)
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