Modern dayadvertisements are not subtle in the ways they utilize sexuality tosell a product to the consumers. Back in the day when Art Nouvaeu wasall the rage, this was no different. Many opinions on the subjectwere polar-opposites to each other; one side saw the beauty andallure of the artistic nude whereas the other side was offended andfelt the form was too blatant and “smutty” for worldwide viewingpleasure.
Today thesesides are still prominent in regards to sex taking the reigns inpromoting consumerism. Because of this, I wanted to explore therelationship between the alluring or offensive material and share itwith others. By using a Secret Belgian Bind, which has a beautifulweaving on the side that resembles the soft thread of a woman’sunder garments, I wanted to stay relevant to the period of ArtNouveau (1880-1920ish) by utilizing the luxurious color palette and acommon flourish. Once inside the book, however, you are greeted witha half title done in the typeface, Impact, which nods to the idea ofthis material being viewed as a “sex scandal” as seen in today’stabloids. The rest of the book references back to this idea by asimilarly bold flourish which supports the idea of viewing this bookboth in the historically accurate time period, as well as the now.The paper stock I decided on also shows age to relate it to the ArtNouveau time period. Mohawk Kraft 80t. and a lining of Mohawk Smoothin Thai Gold create the tones that continue throughout the body copy.
Mainly, Iwanted to create an experience with this book. I wanted the reader tointeract with the book by having to untie a golden bow on the cover,as if unlacing an item of clothing. The book seems fragile and daintyin order to show the intimacy of the piece to the person. The ideaof this precious book being wrapped up also alludes to the ideas ofhiding “naughty” items (such as the current PlayBoy magazines) orkeeping something precious to oneself safe (much like a diary).
I’m ratherproud of my little book, as it is the first book I have both made byhand and designed entirely myself. I have learned so much by tryingto make a Coptic/Secret Belgian Bind with signatures, and althoughsome ideas failed (making the pages printed on both sides) I was ableto make decisions to correct these errors and have certainly gainedsomething from the experience. This will not be my last book I makeand design because I dearly enjoy the process.