Design of the first book by Dansàneu Publicacions about the unpublished ballet "The Sant Joan Fires" , a piece by the composer Robert Gerhard inspired by the "Fallas" of Isil, a festival declared Intangible Heritage of Humanity by UNESCO.
Dansàneu, the Festival of Pyrenean Cultures, commissioned us to design the first volume of the new publishing house Dansàneu Publicacions. Their publishing house born from the Festival organised by the Cultural Council of the Valls d’Àneu (National Culture Award 2021) and whose aim is to publish a book on contemporary culture (dance, music, etc.) each year that is related to the environment of the festival: Pyrenean Catalonia. Dansàneu commissions us to develop this first volume and to define the creative line of a new collection that will help to dimension the activity of the Performing Arts and Music Section of the Consell Cultural.
The book frames 5 texts by different authors and wants to mentally place the user in the culture of the Fallas of the Pyrenees. We wanted the book to explain the power of fire, of the fallas and the delicacy of dance and the contemporary musical composition of Gerhard. We wanted to create a framework that prioritises reading but at the same time allows readers to place themselves mentally in an environment and a moment: the descent of the Fallas in the Pyrenees.
In order to reference the characteristic fire of the fallas and the night of Sant Joan, the cover is worked with a red paper printed in a single ink that tears one by one to make the raw, mass-tinted material visible, visually referencing it to the randomness of a “flame”, making all the books have a different tear to the cover that, in turn, allows you to see the flyleaves printed with the photograph of a trunk, which explains the rawness and harshness of the fallas.
For the design, different elements are worked on in the construction of the page: the headline typography (which refers to the wooden slats of the fallas), the text typography (which facilitates reading), the grid and the structure of the page (which seek to explain the mobility, “the dance” of the different elements and the consumption of the elements), the title pages of each chapter and the photographic offprint as trunk elements.
The structure of the book is guided by a dwindling text box, like wood being consumed by fire, making the width of the column narrower and narrower as the chapter progresses, giving way to ash. For the design of the title pages we work with the ash, the log and the wood, explaining what is so characteristic of the faults: the fire and the transformation.
Through the random manipulation of each volume, the design of the book seeks to create an iconic and unique object, while helping to establish an easy and pleasant reading environment. A careful and conscious with the environment editorial design proposal, with the content and with the meaning of the reflected work, but which does so in an austere way and at the same time saving production resources.