The starting point of the exhibition is the book Cómo se imprime un libro, a photobook that painter and graphic designer Attilio Rossi designed in the early 40s. It offered a detailed explanation of the different processes involved in making a book, with pictures by photographers Horacio Coppola and Grete Stern. Based on that, the exhibition Cómo se imprime un libro. Grafistas e impresores en Buenos Aires 1936-1950 (How Books are Printed. Graphic designers and printers in Buenos Aires 1936-1950) goes on a tour through the key figures of Argentina’s publishing industry during the so-called ‘golden age of publishing’. It shows the work of the aforementioned Attilio Rossi, Grete Stern and Horacio Coppola, and of other remarkable graphic artists like Jakob Hermelin and Luis Seoane, and printer Manuel López.
The exhibition has been curated by graphic designer David Carballal and Silvia Longueira, director of the Fundación Luis Seoane. It is an approach to every aspect of the book arts world, highlighting its most relevant elements: format, layout design, fonts, illustration, cover art, logos, printing and binding, etc. There is a selection of nearly a hundred books, most of which are first editions, from over twelve publishers and twenty imprints. They were chosen based on the value they added to the collective piece of work, multiform but easily identifiable, that is Latin American editorial design in the 20th century, which thrived in the 40s thanks to the emergence of publishers like Losada, Emecé, Espasa-Calpe Argentina or Nova.