The Manhattan meal that inspired Wild Art
Wild Art co-author David Carrier explains how he and Joachim Pissarro got the idea for their new book
Phaidon's Production Controller Paul McGuinness worked closely on the Wild Art book, overseeing in particular the challenging process involved in executing its visually striking, tactile cover.
At Phaidon we usually try things that are recommended against - putting materials together that shouldn't work together - trying to find a way to make them work using different print methods and different finishing techniques until we hit upon a method which results in everything hanging together. Wild Art was a good example of this process. There's a touch of old school DIY fanzine about the design of the book and the content - leftfield creatives doing their own thing outside the system - so we wanted to reflect that and create something that really stood out.
We chose a silver mirror board substrate - a foil covered paper, that couldn't be printed onto in a traditional way. On top of that we wanted to use different finishes - high gloss with black printing on paper with a silver metallic surface over the top and then, on top of that, we wanted to add a matt pink fluoro. We had to find an ink which would work with all of the above but one that also dried pretty much instantly - necessary because of the surface we were printing on.
A lot of the time taken on a book like Wild Art is in the discussion process with our suppliers, during which we try to convince them that what we're proposing is a good idea and that it can actually be done. Getting the initial concept clear and taking it through all the different kinds of tests took months. We like the fact that Wild Art looks very different, looks very strong, looks like no other book and has a certain tactility to it and design book buyers are creative people, they appreciate the book itself as an art object of its own. I think the people who pick up Wild Art up will instantly realise that there is something a little bit extra there for them.