Thunder Bolted

The ace Designers and Books invites you to explore (and purchase) a masterpiece of Avant-Garde book making – Fortunato Depero’s 1927 monograph Depero Futurista, AKA ‘The Bolted Book.’

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Considered the first modern day artist’s book, Fortunato Depero’s legendary 1927 “Bolted Book” is a visual tour de force filled with bold typographical experiments in nearly every medium. Equal parts manifesto and design portfolio, the book transforms into a portable museum when the bolts are removed. In anticipation of launching a Kickstarter campaign on 18 October 2016 to publish the first exact facsimile of this design icon, Designers & Books has put every inspiring page online at boltedbook.com. To whet your appetite, here are five stunning examples from Depero Futurista…

Announcement of the launch of the Futurist art gallery DINAMO-AZARI

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Written by publisher Fedele Azari, this page describes Depero Futurista as “MECHANICAL: bolted like an engine,” warns it is “DANGEROUS: can be used as a projectile,” and declares it is “UNCLASSIFIABLE: cannot be placed alongside other books in the library.”

Dedication to F.T. Marinetti

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The first in a series of typographic compositions Depero refers to as wall manifestos. Enlarged in the center of its arrow-shaped graphic are two passionately stated sentences that suggest Depero’s motivation for creating Depero Futurista: “It is time to be done with recognition of the artist after his death or in advanced old age. The artist needs to be recognized, appreciated, and glorified in his lifetime, and to this end is entitled to use all the most effective and unheard-of means for advertising his own genius and his own works.”

The Need for Self-Advertisement wall manifesto

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The first in a series of typographic compositions Depero refers to as wall manifestos. Enlarged in the center of its arrow shaped graphic are two passionately stated sentences that suggest Depero’s motivation for creating Depero Futurista: “It is time to be done with recognition of the artist after his death or in advanced old age. The artist needs to be recognized, appreciated, and glorified in his lifetime, and to this end is entitled to use all the most effective and unheard-of means for advertising his own genius and his own works.”

Typographical Architecture wall manifesto

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Here Depero presents his ideas about the fusion of architecture and advertising, including an account of how those ideas were realized in the design and construction of the Book Pavilion (Padiglione del Libro) at the 1927 International Exhibition of Decorative Arts in Monza.

Book pavilion at the 1927 International Exhibition of Decorative Arts in Monza

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Designed and built for publisher Bestetti, Tumminelli, and Treves, this book pavilion made out of three-dimensional letters exemplifies Depero's idea of “advertising architecture,” which used the graphic qualities of the product being advertised to generate architectural form.

Find out more, and sign up for the pre-Kickstarter special offer at: boltedbook.com.