ISTD 2021 Invisible Cities | Merit Award

  • Hedzlynn Kamaruzzaman

In attempting a radical retelling of Invisible Cities, the theme of ‘multiple perspectives’ was chosen, as something that Calvino explores within each city and throughout the book as a whole, but that also reflects the various interpretations of the book, written by others, that were discovered through research. This publication aims to communicate the idea of different perspectives, through format, typography and layout. It is targeted at individuals who are interested in literature, open to new ideas or have an appreciation of how typography can communicate. The concept of perspectives determined the concertina format, which enables pages to be viewed at different angles, and for certain pages to be obscured or revealed by others. Each city is represented by two outer pages, representing the initial ‘surface’ experience of the city, as described by Marco Polo to Kublai Khan, which can be opened out to reveal two inner pages, which depict further aspects of the city that become apparent upon closer inspection. The outer pages display large typographic phrases, extracted from the text, that express the generally positive first impressions. The inner pages contain the full text, arranged in a way that alludes to some of the more negative aspects. Similarly, the split cover breaks the word ‘cities’ in two, enabling the reader to reveal the ‘invisible’ perspectives within.