ISTD was delighted that Jost Hochuli accepted an invitation to visit London in September 2017 – supported by Presence Switzerland, and the Swiss Cultural Fund.
Hochuli’s visit during the London Design Festival included a small exhibition running from 8–22 September in the East End – and a talk Jost Hochuli: In Conversation on 19 September in association with and hosted by London College of Communication (LCC) at Elephant & Castle. Such was the popularity of this free event, that it ‘sold out’ within hours of the tickets being released.
The talk, taking the form of an interview facilitated by Tony Pritchard, LCC senior lecturer and ISTD board member, was a rare opportunity to hear the renowned Swiss book designer’s views on historical type matters; and why book design should not just be concerned with beautiful book-objects, but rather should be about making useful tools for reading.
Jost Hochuli: Printed Matter was shown at umlaut¨gallery, as number 13 in the ambit series of design exhibitions, to give the design movement in Switzerland a presence in London; and to establish an intercultural dialogue between Swiss designers and Londoners.
The ambit series of design exhibitions is the result of a close collaboration between the Swiss Cultural fund (SCF) and the British-Swiss marketing agency Blattler.
This Jost Hochuli exhibition featured work selected by Jost from his personal collection, representing just a fragment of his prolific output over the years, but containing some of his favourite pieces.
The talk and the exhibition appealed to a wide audience. Jost was particularly impressed that so many young designers and students were interested in his work. Rebecca Lydamore a recent graduate with an internship at on-IDLE wrote a blog post that tells her own story of discovering the work of Jost Hochuli.
Jost Hochuli is a longstanding ISTD member and Honorary Fellow. Jost is a renowned book designer and foremost expert on the work of Jan Tschichold. He lives and works in St Gallen, Switzerland, and is the author of numerous books on graphic design and typography, including Designing Books, and the recently republished by popular demand, Detail in Typography due to be sent out to all current ISTD members Autumn 2017.
Many of the books Hochuli has designed have been selected for the Schönste Schweizer Bücher (Most Beautiful Swiss Books), and Schönste Bücher aus aller Welt (Most Beautiful Books of the World) exhibitions.
‘The work of the typographer and book designer Jost Hochuli covers the whole scope of the metier. It combines individuality, imagination, modernity, exact knowledge of historical connections, with a functionality, which, deployed with virtuosity, is always put to the service of the reader and the content being designed. Hochuli has found original design solutions for very different kinds of books, from the limited edition and the illustrated book through to the ordinary publisher’s edition and the educational book. With his work he shows what room for creative play there is to explore between tradition and innovation. So the effect of his designs is both playful and precise, both sensitive and solid, and thus they achieve their unobtrusive naturalness. As teacher, author and editor, Jost Hochuli has made an essential contribution to the development of contemporary practice in typography and book design.’ – City of Leipzig’s Gutenberg Prize Committee 1999