form Nº 281.
Design and Archives
Since time immemorial people have tried to help themselves remember by using a variety of techniques and media. After all, memory is not only a prerequisite for the identity of each individual, but also for social progress. In form 281 we have attended to an institution of remembering in all its facets: the archive.
Our examination of the subject led to another archive: a research archive on a wide range of topics related to archiving. For this reason, the Focus section of this issue is structured like a two-dimensional letter case. Sorted into eleven categories, it contains introductory texts, essays, profiles, interviews, quotations, and case studies that show what is archived, where, by whom, how, for whom, and why. The questions that we hope to answer with this are, for example, what principles of order archives are based on, what challenges do respective archival material hold, how is access to archives structured, is it the case that archives also always withhold something from us? Researching archives, collecting documents or documenting your own designs and works is also inspiring and useful for designers. Online, you’ll find an interview with the designers Anthon Astrom and Lukas Zimmer from Astrom / Zimmer, who have worked on various projects for archives.
We also present the works of the Swiss typographer Hans-Rudolf Lutz, explore the much-discussed relationship between original and copy in design, and take a look at the exhibition “Victor Papanek. The Politics of Design”. In the Discourse section we ask questions about the relationship between scientific thinking and design.
From this issue you can read three articles with additional images on our website online. There is a piece on design in the fight against Aids, the second is the interview with Astrom / Zimmer on their work with archives and the third is a review of two books on the Ulm School of Design on the occasion of the Bauhaus centenary.