‘Agreeably transparent and with tremendous rhythm and a sense of rationality.’ With its restrained grey cover you don’t immediately see how generously conceived this substantial volume is. Might that have something to do with the well-chosen format? The book presents the extensive oeuvre of the Antwerp firm Polo Architects, conceptual designers of urban planning, private and public sector housing projects, schools and colleges, offices, commercial properties and interior design.

In terms of rhythm the book is on the right track from the opening pages, where priority is given to an unbroken succession of full-page and double-spread bleeds by way of an instant immersive introduction to the firm’s area of expertise. The succinct table of contents delays its appearance until pages 86-7, but that is not a problem – it is as if the book is making a second breakaway. The use of columns is also ingenious, and there is efficient use of texts and architects’ photographs and plans, the effect of which is to fill this voluminous publication with much air and transparency, right down to the choice of paper.

 

‘Making architecture easy to understand is not given to everyone, but here we are immediately invited to pay attention,’ the panel decided. Or as the architects themselves write: ‘It is the outcome of a quest rather than a punctuation mark.’

 

Year 2015

Language English, translated by Alain Kinsella, Joy Maul-Phillips

Edited by Joeri De Bruyn et al

Publisher Public Space, Mechelen (BE)

Designer Sven Beirnaert, photography by Filip Dujardin et al

Prepress Pixelbound, Bruges (BE) (Steven Decroos)

Printer Die Keure, Bruges (BE)

Binder Die Keure, Bruges (BE)

Size 200 x 265 x 42

Number of pages 508 p.

Print run 1,500

Price € 49.95

ISBN 978 94 9178 908 3

Font Circular (Lineto), Caslon Pro (Adobe)

Binding style sewn hardback with a flat spine; white foil stamping on cover and spine

Material 150gsm Profibulk 1.1, 90gsm Munken Print White 1.9, 90gsm Edixion (interior), 170gsm Multioffset (endpapers), 120gsm Wibalin Natural 540 Dove Grey over grey board (binding)