Barbican – The Japanese House

Text Image

The Japanese House: Architecture and Life after 1945
Catalogues and forthcoming exhibition
Marsilio, with the Barbican Art Gallery and MAXXI
London and Rome, 2016–2017

Kellenberger–White were commissioned to create the graphic design for The Japanese House: Architecture and Life after 1945, an exhibition (at the Barbican Art Gallery in London, 23 March–25 June 2017) and catalogue (produced in English and Italian editions). We started with the 2:1 ratio of the traditional Japanese tatami mat, extrapolated to provide a grid for text blocks and versatile image placement throughout the catalogue. The book was section sewn with teal stitching. For the page numbers, we developed a font from pencil-written digits to give a human warmth and handwritten feel to the folios, similar to handwritten notes found on architectural plans; for the text, we used Optimo’s Plain font, for an appropriately clean and minimalist feel.

Project team
Edited: Pippo Ciorra and Florence Ostende
Art direction and Design: Kellenberger–White