STUDIO / DESIGNER
The Salvage Press
Printed Book Design
Rainer Gerstenberg, Type caster, Craig Jensen, Bookbinder, Marc Hammonds, Bookbinder Marc Landers, Woodworker
Design Challenge and Design Ideas
I wanted to in some way make visual the extent of the Irish homelessness crisis. Each day the news media would utter homeless figures which in many ways undermined the enormity of the problem. How can a person or population react to a situation when it is impossible to understand the true scale of the problem. A protest book developed, the challenge being how best to convey statistics associated with this terrible crisis.
How the brief was fulfilled
The Department of Housing, Planning, Community and Local Government reported that in the lead up to Christmas 2018 there were 1,753 families homeless in the Republic of Ireland. Their definition for what constitutes homeless altered in 2018, skewing this figure from the true number, which is undoubtedly higher. What does 1,753 marbles look like, or 1,753 cars, or 1,753 people, or 1,753 families?
In an effort to make the extent of this crisis more tangible, there are 1,753 empty pages in this book, each representing one homeless family. 110 signatures are exposed in the binding.
Conceived and letterpress printed by Jamie Murphy at Distillers Press, NCAD, Dublin. The type is 24pt Méridien. The paper is 145gsm Zerkall. Medieval style by Craig Jensen and Marc Hammonds at BookLab II, San Marcos, Texas. The boards are ebonised quarter-sawn oak. Eight copies have been produced marked A to H, each housed in a Japanese cloth covered solander box, the final three reserved for the collaborators.
Conceptually it is rigorous. Aesthetically its form is incredibly intriguing and has a softness. It exudes craft at the highest level"