Monday, December 14, 2009

By Its Cover: New Nabokov Editions

Art director John Gall was tasked with designing a series of covers for the new editions of 18 of Vladimir Nabokov's seminal works, to coincide with the release of his unfinished (and controversially published) final novel, The Original of Laura. Gall gathered an impressive roster of designers to help with the project, and cleverly chose to give the series consistency by honoring Nabokov's passion for lepidopterology.

From Gall:
Nabokov was a passionate butterfly collector, a theme that has cropped up on some of his past covers. My idea was also a play on this concept. Each cover consists of a photograph of a specimen box, the kind used by collectors like Nabokov to display insects. Each box would be filled with paper, ephemera, and insect pins, selected to somehow evoke the book's content. And to make it more interesting for readers — and less daunting for me — I thought it would be fun to ask a group of talented designers to help create the boxes.

Among those he asked were esteemed book designer Chip Kidd, author and McSweeney's main-man Dave Eggers, Pentagram designer Michael Bierut, and Appetite Engineers head honcho Martin Venezky.

Here are a few of our favorites:


(clockwise from top left: Speak, Memory by Michael Bierut; Pale Fire by Stephen Doyle; Glory by Martin Venezky; ; The Eye by John Gall; King, Queen, Knave by Peter Mendelsund; The Gift by Rodrigo Corral)


You can see the entire series HERE.

No comments: