O AMINTIRE FĂCUTĂ BINE
Is the title of this nice project that is kind of difficult to put in English without losing the deep Romanian simple meaning. It’s something like a very well accomplished (and preserved, for that matter) memory. The title is an extrait from an interview with one of the inmates that was subject in this artist book we made with our dear friends photographer Nicu Ilfoveanu and anthropologists Andrada Istrate & Puiu Lățea.
This project got the national design award “The most beautiful book” in the artist book category in 2017. We love this project because it has a lot in it: research, anthropology, photography, interviews and design. Somewhere in the Danube Delta, in an isolated place named Chilia Veche, a non lived island on grindul Tătaru, there was this construction site that was built by prisoners during one summer.
Romanian State Penitentiaries are pretty crowded, very crowded, actually, so for these men working at this construction site really was freedom. They were brought here in the morning and taken back to their cells in the evening without being guarded during the day because there wasn’t really any place they could run.
Our friends spent some time with them, and everyone got this family feeling on that isolated island in Danube Delta where there was nothing but work and wild nature. That was part of the concept of this book structured in two main parts (one with nature and the other with the workers and the construction site) that are connected in a leporello form. We used a one size typeface for the text because we wanted to reflect in design the simplicity, honesty and innocence of the characters (workers/prisoners). Up to now this is one of our favourite book projects we were involved and we are very proud of it.