In his book »Ornament Stadt«, the Austrian artist Herbert Stattler transferred 16 designs of ideal cities into precise pencil drawings. Urban utopias from the Renaissance to the 20th century are reproduced by Stattler again and again, until the ideal city is multiplied into an ornament: fans and concentric circles, repeating bubbles and dispersing stars. In the detail however, in the movement of the pencil that repeats the original, there is a liveness that counteracts the »big plan« in a congenial way.
The design of the book draws on portfolios used by urban planners and draftsmen. The pages are folded in a way that the drawings appear in their original size. Only at closer inspection does it become apparent that they are drawn in pencil. The line is not always perfect, and in consequence the drawing departs from the utopias of those architects who believed in perfect ideals of the city.
The book is published on the occasion of the solo exhibition »Stadtleitbilder« at the Austrian Cultural Forum Berlin 2014.
Longlist of the Stiftung Buchkunst »The most beautiful German books 2015.«
Concept Herbert Stattler, Helmut Völter
Graphic design Helmut Völter
27.2 x 34.0 cm, 16 drawings, folded, block stitching with cover, separate text booklet with 24 pp. and 3 illustrations, English and German.
»Ornament Stadt« is also available as numbered and signed special edition (1/25 – 25/25 + 3 AP) featuring one original pencil drawing in a bag of one of the 16 original printing sheets. Format of the unfolded drawing: 46,2 x 34 cm.
Available at: www.spectorbooks.com