Monozukuri, formes d’impression

In recent years, France’s graphic industry has experienced a quickening rate of standardisation. The advent of web-based printers, and the mass closures of independent printworks with the ensuing loss of expertise, are depleting the quality of graphic output. The graphic designer’s trade is increasingly influenced by the possibilities and limitations of DTP software programs, which is accentuating this underlying trend by minimising the role of production in the creation of printed objects.

Monozukuri literally means ‘production process’ our ‘creative process’, but the scope of the concept reaches far wider. For the Japanese, it is about intelligent production and the mastery of mechanisms that yield a thing of excellence. Monozukuri is not the mere repetition of learned steps: calling for mental creativity, it is more an art than a science. We certainly not backward-looking nostalgics. In this exhibition, we show how process can be central to contemporary graphic design. We lay bare the modus operandi of production – a phase little known because often hidden – with the help of printing films, die-cutting formes, embossing plates, silkscreens, and so on. Graphic designers’ work is sometime shown in the exploratory or sketch phase, but most often as the end product in context, or in a museum staging. The exhibition gives this phase an existence that reaches beyond mere tools and considers production as key to contemporary graphic design. A bridge is thus built between graphic design and industry, showing the importance of the printer, the papermaker and the other actors in the graphic-design supply chain.

We present about 30 pieces of work by graphic designers. Each highlights a specific printing or production method by drawing a parallel between the finished object and the image carrier and any moulds used to duplicate it. An image carrier is a single matrix that allows series production of an image. The carrier varies according to the reproduction technique: a transparent film on which the motif is printed in black, then a stretched fabric panel for the screenprint; an aluminium plate for offset; a relief carrier for embossing; a plastic carrier for stamping, etc.

With the works of:
Anthony Fabre ; Antoine+Manuel ; Atelier de création graphique ; Bettina Henni ; FLAG Bastien Aubry/Dimitri Broquard ; Coline Sunier & Charles Mazé ; Cornel Windlin ; officeabc ; Fanette Mellier ; Frédéric Teschner ; Grégoire Romanet ; James Goggin ; Hans Gremmen ; Vincent Perrottet ; Julien Tavelli et David Keshavjee ; Le Tampographe Sardon ; Marco Mueller et Nicolas Sourvinos ; Mathias Schweizer ; Niessen & de Vries ; M/M (Paris) ; Peter Nencini ; Pierre Bernard ; Xavier Antin ; Atelier Ter Bekke/Behage ; Sp Millot.

Exhibition curators: Sacha Léopold and Charles Beauté,
with design assistance from Lionel Dinis Salazar.

Bouchardon space, ground-floor

Supported by Lézard Graphique, JCDecaux/Avenir and H+M France.

M/M (Paris), officeabc
Le Tampographe Sardon
Atelier de création graphique, Grégoire Romanet, spMillot, Cornel Windlin, James Goggin
Esther de Vries et Richard Niessen
Coline Sunier et Charles Mazé
Peter Nencini
Vincent Perrottet
Grégoire Romanet