Most beautiful book cover: Alice in Wonderland

March 10, 2015

Alice in Wonderland / Alice in Spiegelland is not only one of the Best Dutch Book Designs of 2014, it is also clad in the most beautiful book cover of that year. That is the result of an election held in January. llustrator Floor Rieder and designer Suzanne Nuis are responsible for the book's appearance, Gottmer, Haarlem, being the publisher.


Libris, the organisation in which some hundred independent booksellers cooperate, initiated this election. Booksellers nominated 15 covers, more than 4,000 readers went to vote.


Between 2001 and 2010 the Best Dutch Book Designs foundation organised this election in collaboration with the Dutch book trade magazine Boekblad. When this initiative was discontinued Libris took over.

Best of the best in Leipzig

March 2, 2015

Books in the field of art, photography and architecture are increasingly published in a variety of international entanglements. This year's Golden Letter, the highest prize of the Best Book Design from all over the World contest in Leipzig, Germany, was won by the book Untitled (September Magazine) by artist Paul Elliman, co-published by Roma Publications from Amsterdam.


This book hit the Leipzig jury desk as one of the most beautiful books of 2013 in Brussels and Wallonia. Two of the Best Dutch Book Designs 2014 also won prizes in Leipzig.


A silver medal was awarded to Awoiska van der Molen's photo book Sequester (published by Fw:Books, design Hans Gremmen). Besides that there was a bronze medal for New Horizons by Bruno van den Elshout, who a year long took photograps of the sea from a roof (published by The Eriskay Connection, design Rob van Hoesel).


The seven judges in Leipzig had to judge 585 books from 30 countries. The award ceremony will take place on March 13 at the Leipzig Book Fair.

The Best Dutch Book Designs 2014

February 27, 2015

Today we make public which books are The Best Dutch Book Designs of 2014.


Who chose them? That job was done by a panel consisting of Hans Bockting (graphic designer, Amsterdam), Carolien Glazenburg (curator at the Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam), Bregitta Kramer (print coordinator, book binder and teacher in printing techniques, Diemen), Joris Kritis (graphic designer, Brussels) and Astrid Vorstermans (publisher at Valiz, Amsterdam). Books in which one of the judges was involved were nominated for election by a shadow panel consisting of former Best Dutch Book Designs judges.


What was the scope of the choice? The choice was made out of 298 books that appeared in 2014, submitted by their publishers, commissioners, designers or companies that took care of their production.


What did the judges choose? The judges chose 33 books that according to their opinion distinguished themselves conspicuously by their editorial choices, graphic design, treatment of images and text, choice of material and technical workmanship.


p = publisher  d = graphic designer  pr = production



Lewis Carroll – Alice in Wonderland / Alice in Spiegelland, illustrated by Floor Rieder

p Gottmer  d Suzanne Nuis  pr Printsupport4U


Mattie Boom, Hans Rooseboom – Modern Times. Photography in the 20th Century

p Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam  d Irma Boom  pr Lecturis (Gerrie van Beek) / Lecturis / Patist, Van Waarden


Harold Strak, Willem van Zoetendaal – FRIET Speciaal

p Bureau Monumenten & Archeologie Amsterdam, Van Zoetendaal Publishers  d Willem van Zoetendaal  pr Harold Strak / robstolk / Agia & Lith


Bart Moeyaert – De Gans en zijn Broer, illustrated by Gerda Dendooven

p Querido Kinderboeken  d Gert Dooreman  pr Uccello Grafico / Ten Brink / Abbringh


Eric-Jan Pleijster, Cees van der Veeken (LOLA Landscape Architects) – Dutch Dikes

p nai010 publishers  d Koehorst in 't Veld  pr NPN drukkers / Abbringh


Bette Westera – Doodgewoon, illustrated by Sylvia Weve

p Gottmer  d Bockting Ontwerpers  pr Eurasia (China)




p = publisher  d = graphic designer  pr = production



Herman Koch – Het Diner

p Ambo | Anthos  d Roald Triebels  pr Mat-Zet, Uccello Grafico / Wilco


Jaap Scholten – Horizon City

p AFdH Uitgevers  d Martien Frijns  pr Lecturis / Stronkhorst Boekbinders


Awoiska van der Molen – Sequester

p Fw:Books  d Hans Gremmen  pr Harold Strak / Lecturis / Handboekbinderij Geertsen


Bruno van den Elshout – New Horizons

p The Eriskay Connection  d Rob van Hoesel  pr Colour & Books / Lenoirschuring / Buchbinderei Burkhardt (CH)


Whispers. Ulay on Ulay

p Valiz  d Haller Brun  pr Colorset / die Keure (B) / Van Mierlo


Émeric Lhuisset – Maydan. Hundred Portraits

p Paradox, YdocPublishing, André Frère Éditions (F)  d Pierre Rousteau  pr Colour & Books / Rodi Rotatiedruk / Hexspoor 


p = publisher  d = graphic designer  pr = production



Bieke Depoorter – I am about to Call it a Day

p Edition Patrick Frey (CH), Hannibal Publishing (B)  d Mevis & Van Deursen  pr robstolk / Agia & Lith


New Urban Configurations

p Delft University Press  d Hans Gremmen, Ayumi Higuchi  pr Wilco


Sergison Bates Architects, Von Ballmoos Krucker, Werner Neuwirth – Three Houses in Vienna

p Park Books (CH)  d Joost Grootens, Silke Koeck  pr Marc Gijzen / Lecturis / Patist


Anjes GesinkVogels Huilen Niet. Klein Vogelleed in de Grote Stad

p Lecturis  d Kristin Metho  pr Lecturis / Patist


Kinderprenten, Volksprenten, Centsprenten, Schoolprenten

p Vantilt  d Piet Gerards Ontwerpers  pr Èpos Press / Abbringh


Frederike Huygen – Schrofer Sketches

p Lecturis  d Studio Joost Grootens (Joost Grootens with Silke Koeck, Dimitri Jeannottat)  pr Lecturis / Patist


p = publisher  d = graphic designer  pr = production



Frederike Huygen – Lex Reitsma. 196 Affiches voor De Nederlandse Opera

p Lex Reitsma, nai010 publishers  d Lex Reitsma  pr Mart.Spruijt / Cahier & Stanswerk


Marta Kuzma (ed.) – Big SignLittle Building

p Office for Contemporary Art Norway, Buchhandlung Walther König  d Hans Gremmen  pr Lecturis


Freek Lomme, Joan van Barneveld – Into Longing, Vast Rock

p Onomatopee  d Geoffrey Brusatto  pr Lecturis / Patist 


Anouk Kruithof, Freek Lomme, Christof Nüssli (ed.) – The Bungalow

p Onomatopee  d Christof Nüssli  pr Lecturis


Elisa van Joolen – 11" x 17"

p Onomatopee  d Our Polite Society (Matthias Kreutzer, Jens Schildt)  pr Lecturis / Patist


Hans Ibelings, Yurr Rozenberg, René de Wit – Proyecto Roble

p Van Helvoirt Pensioen  d YURR Grafisch Ontwerp  pr Pixelink (Felix Bisschoff) / Drukkerij Tielen / Handboekbinderij Geertsen




p = publisher  d = graphic designer  pr = production



Willem van Zoetendaal – Johan van der Keuken. Mise au Jour

p Van Zoetendaal Publishers  d Willem van Zoetendaal  pr Harold Strak / Trifolio (I) / Hexspoor


Jean Segui, Élodie Boyer – Ligne B. Invitation au Havre

p Éditions Non Standard (F)  d Patrick Doan  pr Lenoirschuring / Patist, J. Voetelink & Zoon 


Tammo Schuringa, Karien Wienga (ed.) – Kon Makandra. Amsterdam-Paramaribo, Paramaribo-Amsterdam

p Gerrit Rietveld Academie  d Niessen & de Vries (Esther de Vries)  pr Marc Gijzen / Mart.Spruijt / Stronkhorst Boekbinders


Pieter-Paul van Laake – urenboek

p Het 7 dal  d Brigitte Slangen  pr All-Print / Coers & Roest / Hendricks & Lützenkirchen (D)


Melle Hammer – LaLaLa

p Perdu in collaboration with Terras magazine  d Melle Hammer  pr Raddraaier / Patist



p = publisher  d = graphic designer  pr = production



Asger Jorn. The Secret of Art

p Cobra Museum of Moderne Art  d Niessen & de Vries (Richard Niessen)  pr Zwaan Printmedia / Agia & Lith 


Jan Boterman – Zocherstraat 27-3. Geschiedenis en Herinneringen 1946-1963

p Uitgeverij Bovenkomen  d Jan Boterman  pr Sander Pinkse Boekproductie, Lex Reitsma / Pantheon drukkers


Alex Farrar – The 'Suit'

p 7.45 Books  d Barbara Iwanicka, Linda Beumer  pr The Tetley (UK), Amsterdams Grafisch Atelier


Arna Mackic – Mortal Cities Forgotten Monuments

p Arna Mackic  d Bas Koopmans, Oliver Modosch  pr Zwaan Printmedia / Agia & Lith






The Best Dutch Book Designs 2014 is generously supported by paper suppliers Antalis, Almere, collective rights organisation BNO/Pictoright, Amsterdam and L. van Heek Textiles, Losser, among many more manufacturer of binding materials 

A special selection at the Museum Gouda


February 16, 2015

From February 17 onwards the Museum Gouda will be hosting the exhibition Uitgelezen. It is an exhibition on the printing of books, on reading and on books in general, by means of four varying and compact presentations. Three of those are historical in character, the fourth being about the future of the book.


Guest curator Petra Luijkx (Museum Meermanno, The Hague) is of the opinion that the well-designed book is heading towards a bright future. She makes her statement by showing some 30 books that since the year 2000 have been elected among the Best Dutch Book Designs.


This special selection out of fourteen Best Dutch Book Designs selections was put together on her invitation by a special jury (photo: Frank Jansen, Rijswijk).


The exhibition will be running until May 17. For more information, and also some additional events, go to



The Best Dutch Book Designs 2013 on show

February 15, 2015

On Friday February 27 The Best Dutch Book Designs 2014 will be disclosed. Right now The Best Dutch Book Designs 2013 are still to be seen at Museum Meermanno | Huis van het Boek, The Hague (prolongated until May 17) and at printers Lenoirschuring of Amstelveen.


Previously this selection has been on show at the following venues:

Leipzig, Leipzig Book Fair, March 13-16, 2014
Berlin, TYPO Berlin, Haus der Kulturen der Welt, May 15-17, 2014, as the main part of The Best of Dutch Book Design

Berlin, Dutch embassy, May 20-June 20, 2014, as the main part of The Best of Dutch Book Design (photo)
Frankfurt, Frankfurt Book Fair, October 8-12, 2014, as part of Book Art International

– Amsterdam, Stedelijk Museum, October 25, 2014-February 15, 2015
Vienna, Neue Hauptbücherei, December 4, 2014-Februari 7, 2015
Tokyo, Printing Museum, November 29, 2014-Februari 22, 2015, as part of World Book Design 2013-2014

Registration is open until January 7, 2015

December 5, 2014

Today is the day registration for The Best Dutch Book Designs 2014 opens. Candidates for this year's selection are welcome until January 7, 2015.


Five judges, all experienced book pros, will scrutinize the books submitted and will compile this 56th selection of the year. Simultaneously their choice will be the Dutch submission to Best Book Design from all over the World, the world beauty contest for the book in Leipzig, Germany.


Later in 2015 the Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam will exhibit the new selection. The Best Dutch Book Designs of 2013 are still on show there, until February 15, 2015.


No chance? Come on, there are at least 30 and at maximum 33 books that are going to be elected. The Best Dutch Book Designs: the hall of fame of the Dutch book. So hand in your entries. Do it until January 7, 2015. Do it here


Left: Bookshop, colour etching by Willy Belinfante

Go smell them at the Stedelijk

October 26, 2014

Since yesterday they are there to be seen again at the Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam, the annual crop of Best Dutch Book Designs. The three tailormade display tables created by exhibition designers Event Architecture are to be found in one of the entrance rooms of the museum's design section. This year they are adorned with a crisp yellow tone.

The judges behind this selection are designers Marlies Visser and Hans Bockting, publisher Hanca Leppink and the print advisors Bregitta Kramer and Johan Holterman. Out of 309 entries they chose 33 books as the Best Dutch Book Designs of 2013.

Visitors of the Stedelijk Museum are supposed to stay clear from the art objects on show. The Best Dutch Book Designs are the exception. You are cordially invited to weigh them on your hand, to touch them, even to smell them.

The exhibition will be on show until February 15, 2015. (Photo: Gert Jan van Rooij)

New catalogue out

October 25, 2014


The opening of the Best Dutch Book Designs exhibition at the Amsterdam Stedelijk Museum today also saw the launch of the new catalogue The Best Dutch Book Designs 2013 De Best Verzorgde Boeken. The books presents the 33 books of this year's pick of the jury in words and images. 

The book was designed by Art Collart, a graduate from the Willem de Kooning Academy in Rotterdam who also lives and works there. He came up with the idea of adding to the book a quote by one of the makers of each and every Best Dutch Book Design. On top of that there is a kaleidoscopic picture section entitled The Making of the Best Dutch Book Designs.

The book could be realised thanks to generous support from a whole bunch of players in the Dutch printing industry, among them ten printers and four finishing specialists. The paper was made available by suppliers Antalis and Arctic Paper Benelux. L. van Heek Textiles, manufacturers of book binding materials, contributed the binding material for this handsome hardcover book.      

Price of the book: € 27.50. ISBN 978 90 5965 250 7.


Back on the tracks: The Best of Dutch Book Design

April 25, 2014

After a year-long time-out The Best of Dutch Book Design, an exhibition in the form of a traveling library, will be hitting the road again. From May 20 till June 20 the Dutch Embassy in Berlin will host the exhibition. Visitors will be able to leaf through the Best Dutch Book Designs of 2013, plus an additional set of some interesting Best Dutch Book Designs of the last few years.

Towards the end of last year The New Institute in Rotterdam, which at its inception took over the exhibition from Premsela – The Netherlands Institute for Design and Fashion, decided not to carry on with The Best of Dutch Book Design. In consultation with our partners, the Association of Dutch Designers (BNO), Dutch Culture and the Dutch Foundation for Literature we decided to go on booking the show ourselves. We are grateful to The New Institute for the care they took in the meantime.

Irma Boom wins Johannes Vermeer Prize

April 15, 2014

Book designer Irma Boom won the Johannes Vermeer Prize 2014, the state prize for the arts in the Netherlands, on the strength of her "unrivaled merits in the field of graphic design".

This is the 6th time the Johannes Vermeer Prize is being awarded. Among earlier winners are photographer Erwin Olaf, painter Marlene Dumas and architect Rem Koolhaas. Former Dutch minister Ernst Hirsch Ballin was the jury's chairman.

Irma Boom studied at AKI arts academy in Enschede and started her own studio in Amsterdam in 1991. In 2001 she was awarded the Gutenberg Prize in Leipzig, where she won awards several times in the international book contest Best Book Design from all over the World. Since 1988 47 of her books have been elected for the Best Dutch Book Designs. Search for Irma Boom on this webpage and her Best Dutch Book Designs of the last 7 years will appear.

Honorary diploma for book on poet Lucebert

March 4, 2014

Ik ben een gemankeerde saxofonist (I am a failed saxophone player), the book that came out last year on the connections between Dutch poet Lucebert and jazz, won a honorary diploma at Best Book Design from all over the World, Leipzig's annual judging of books from a great many countries.

The book traces its subject by presenting Lucebert's poems and works of visual art, next to photographs, written contributions and two cd's. There is even a survey of Lucebert's jazz and blues records. The book was compiled by Ben IJpma and Ben van Melick, was designed by Piet Gerards Ontwerpers, Huis Clos being its publisher.

Founded in 1963, Best Book Design from all over the World is the annual beauty contest for the book since 1991, organised by Stiftung Buchkunst, Frankfurt/Leipzig.

This year the seven judges saw themselves confronted with Best Book selections from thirty countries. Among them were the 33 Best Dutch Book Designs, that had been selected by the Dutch jury just a few days before the judging in Leipzig.

The Best Dutch Book Designs 2013

February 21, 2014

Today is the day The Best Dutch Book Designs selection of 2013 is being unveiled.

In December 2013 and the beginning of January 2014 there were 309 books being submitted to the judges, whereas 305 a year earlier. This year's judges were:
- Hans Bockting, graphic designer, Bockting Ontwerpers, Amsterdam
- Johan Holterman, print advisor, Graphiques, Nijmegen
- Bregitta Kramer, print coordinator, teacher in printing techniques and book binder, Diemen
- Hanca Leppink, editor at large, publishers Luitingh-Sijthoff, Amsterdam
- Marlies Visser, graphic designer, Studio Marlies Visser, Haarlem.
Their choice is summarized in the columns at your right hand and is presented more extensively on our homepage. Later in the year The Best Dutch Book Designs will be on show at the Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam.
The Best Dutch Book Designs 2013 are generously supported by paper suppliers Antalis (Almere), collective rights organisation BNO/Pictoright (Amsterdam) and
L. van Heek Textiles, manufacturers of book binding materials (Losser).


Koen Kleijn, Rob van Zoest (ed.) – The Canals of Amsterdam / De grachten van Amsterdam

design by Lex Reitsma for publishers THOTH and Kunsthistorisch Bureau D’ARTS

Els Kloek (ed.) – 1001 vrouwen uit de
Nederlandse geschiedenis

design by Irma Boom Office (Irma Boom, Julia Neller) for publishers Vantilt

Jan Paul Schutten – Het raadsel van alles wat
, iillustrated by Floor Rieder

design by Tobias David for publishers Gottmer

Irma Boom. The Architecture of the Book (standard and XXL edition)

design by Irma Boom for publishers Lecturis

Ilka and Andreas Ruby (ed.) – MVRDV

design by Studio Joost Grootens (Joost Grootens with Tine van Wel, Boris Meister, Slávka Pauliková) for nai010 publishers

Koos Breukel – Me We

design by Sabine Verschueren for Hannibal Publishing and Ydoc Publishing



Wigger Bierma, Astrid Vorstermans (ed.) – Walter
Nikkels depicted / abgebildet / afgebeeld

design by Wigger Bierma, with collaboration from Ana Laura Campos, Walter Nikkels (cover) for publishers Valiz and Tropen

Paul Auster – Bericht vanuit het innerlijk, translated by Ronald Vlek

design by Studio Ron van Roon (Bart Rouwhorst), Nico Richter and Steven van der Gaauw for publishers De Arbeiderspers

Frederike Huygen – Jurriaan Schrofer

design by Jaap van Triest and Karel Martens for publishers Valiz

Wijnanda Deroo – Rijks Museum

design by Irma Boom and Sanne van de Goor for Rijksmuseum Amsterdam, nai010 publishers

Kadir van Lohuizen – Vía PanAm. Exploring
Migration in the Americas

design by Heijdens Karwei for Ydoc Publishing, Paradox

Anneke van Veen (ed.) – Fotostudio Merkelbach.
Portretten 1913-1969

design by Typography, Interiority & Other Serious Matters for publishers Komma/d’jonge Hond


Joost van Bleiswijk / Kiki van Eijk. Co-Evolution

design by AB/C Anthon Beeke Collective (Mariola López Mariño) for publishers Lecturis

Bart Moeyaert – Jij en ik en alle andere
kinderen. De verzamelde verhalen en kindergedichten

design by Herman Houbrechts (cover) and Studio Cursief (Irma Hornman) for publishers Querido

Het werk van Cepezed in detail

design by Reynoud Homan with collaboration from Robbert Zweegman for nai010 publishers

Eddy van Wessel – The Edge of Civilization

design by Bert de Jong for

Henk Wildschut – Food / Voedsel

design by Robin Uleman, with special thanks to Sandra Rabenou, for post editions

Ko Sliggers – Koken tussen vulkanen

design by Ko Sliggers for publishers Loopvis


Aleid Rensen – De verdwenen dierentuin. Mijn leven
met het Noorder Dierenpark

design by Staal & Duiker Ontwerpers (Koos Staal) for publishers Lecturis

Suzanne Buchan, Jaap Guldemond, Marente Bloemheuvel (ed.) – The Quay Brothers’ Universum

design by Joseph Plateau grafisch ontwerpers for EYE Filmmuseum

Etgar Keret / Adam Ross / George Saunders / F. Scott Fitzgerald – short stories series

design by Studio Ron van Roon for publishers Podium

Ben van Melick (ed.) – Theater Levano. Een
film en een boek over Chaim Levano

design by Piet Gerards Ontwerpers for publishers Huis Clos

Trinité & Lexicon. The typefaces designed by Bram de Does

design by Bram de Does for publishers Spectatorpers and De Buitenkant 

Ben IJpma, Ben van Melick (ed.) – Ik ben een
gemankeerde saxofonist. Lucebert & jazz

design by Piet Gerards Ontwerpers for publishers Huis Clos


Leo Erken – Street. Eastern Europe and the former
Soviet Union 1987-2003

design by Svea Gustavs for weiw publishers

Ineke Riem – Zeven pogingen om een geliefde te wekken

design by Nico Richter for publishers De Arbeiderspers

Ellen Oostvogel (ed.) – Honderduit Haag.
Haag Atletiek 1913-2013

design by Studio Koelewijn Brüggenwirth (Jeroen Koelewijn, Judith Brüggenwirth) for Haag Atletiek

Els Kuijpers – and/or. on contradiction in the work
of Jan van Toorn. extended

design by Jan van Toorn and Mart Rozenbeek for nai010 publishers

Freek Lomme, Kathrin Schlegel (ed.) – Distillations.
Notes on Kathrin Schlegel’s Insertions in Public Space

design by Mind Design (Niels Schrader, Miriam Thijssen) for Onomatopee

Ana Teixidó, Arthur Rosenfeld (ed.) – A Love
Story. The Meekers

design by Art Collart for Stichting Meekers


Liter. Christelijk literair tijdschrift

design by Steven van der Gaauw for Stichting Liter

Koos Staal – De krant van gisteren. Uitgelezen

design by Koos Staal for Staal & Duiker Ontwerpers

Arno Nollen

design by Willy Clausen for Slangen Advocaten

De Best Verzorgde Boeken 2013 is generously supported by paper suppliers Antalis, Almere, collective rights organisation
BNO/Pictoright, Amsterdam and L. van Heek Textiles, Losser, among many more manufacturer of binding materials