Thursday, 10 September 2009

'Sketches' 1941-2005 Jan Kaplicky

Whilst visiting London last weekend I found time to take a look at the current exhibition at the Design Museum: 'Remembering Jan Kaplicky - Architect of the Future'. After walking for an hour from the nearest tube station, trying to find a poorly signed Design Museum, through a maze of streets, most of which in the wrong direction, I finally arrived at what turned out to be a rather disappointing exhibition. However, downstairs in the gallery's shop I found this intriguing book that had the inspiration I was looking for, that the exhibition had lacked.

'Sketches' is a unique book compiled from 60 years of Kaplicky's hand drawn sketches. These illustrations look so rare in todays digital world, their primitive, simple style is striking and full of character when compared to the far more clinical style a computer produces. They almost look as though they are quickly scribbled down as an idea has just been realised. The book consists of initial, very rough sketches and ideas, to more developed whole buildings or detailed, single elements. It is a very intimate experience to look through Kaplicky's sketches in this way, showing his chain of thought and private workings, most of which have never been made. The book is almost like a diary or log book in which the artist has developed over his lifetime and makes it feel very personal to the reader. 

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