Thursday, 3 March 2011

Drawbridge - issue 19, Volume 2

The Drawbridge is an interesting publication and one that is hard to describe. It isn't a magazine, newspaper, journal, or even periodical. It is described as an "independent quarterly of thought, wit and reflection giving equal focus to literature and visual arts" and has just been subject to a radical transformation.

The Drawbridge originated as a full-colour newspaper format (I wrote about it in my post in December 2009: It is now a book-sized publication (195x260mm Portrait with 12mm spine). The content now forms the basis of quarterly exhibitions curated alongside each issue but still with a theme for each.
Cover photograph: Flights by Dave Anderson, 2004
Photograph: Charles, Vasa, Minnesota, 2002 by Alec Soth
Photographs: Falling in Trees 1 and 2 by Elijah Gowin, 2006
Main drawing: The Chair, project for an installation by Davide Bignami, 2008
Photograph: Athens, Greece, 2004 by Jim Goldberg.
...and a flattering report from design commentator Rick Poynor:
"Changing a magazine's format is always risky. It's such a fundamental aspect of what we perceive it to be. The Drawbridge's transformation is particularly startling. Indeed, it might rate as one of the most dramatic changes of visual direction ever ventured by a literary magazine. Or any kind of magazine." Rick Poynor, Design Observer

The re-design has been carried out by Creative Director, Stephen Coates. In the same way that he used the newspaper format with great effect, he has equally made illustration and photography work in this format by leaving (and creating) lots of space.
The specification is 4pp cover on StarFine White 300gsm and 142pp text on StarFine White 115gsm. The printing deservedly remains with London printers, Push (given what an excellent job they made on the previous issues printed on Redeem 100% Recycled 70gsm)

I wish Bigna Pfenninger (Editor) and her team, much success with the new format.
Posted by Justin Hobson 03.03.2011

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