February 22, 2013

Most Beautiful Books — Australia & New Zealand

Monash University Art Design & Architecture

Photography and design, © 2013 Stuart Geddes, Stuart Hall, Brad Haylock & Joe Shakespeare.

A new awards program recognising the best in Australian and New Zealand contemporary book design will hand out its first accolades in 2013.

Open to Australian and New Zealand designers, printers and publishers, the biennial Most Beautiful Books – Australia and New Zealand (MBBANZ) awards have been established by Monash University’s Faculty of Art Design & Architecture (MADA) to recognise originality and innovation in contemporary book design and production, for books published in 2011 and 2012.

Co-founder of the awards and senior lecturer Dr Brad Haylock said the MBBANZ was distinct from existing programs due to its focus on better recognising small and independent publishers, in addition to larger publishing entities in Australia and New Zealand.

“There is a vibrant design and publishing culture in Australia and New Zealand and we want to celebrate the most innovative book designs, regardless of scale. We encourage entries of all types including titles from independent and small press publishers,” Dr Haylock said.

“The MBBANZ awards are structured in a way that recognises a greater variety of book design activity in Australia and New Zealand.

“The jury has a greater flexibility in determining the worthiness of entries, and there are no entry fees, which allows nominations not only from designers, publishers and printers, but also from readers, retailers and the broader book-loving community.”

Recognised local and international experts in book design and publishing will form the panel of five jurors, including designers James Langdon from the UK, Layla Tweedie-Cullen from New Zealand and Warren Taylor, Peter Corrigan and Denise Whitehouse from Australia.

Modelled on the Most Beautiful Swiss Books program, established in 1943, and drawing influence from other programs of this type in Germany, Belgium and the Netherlands, the MBBANZ awards are the initiative of a group of industry professionals and book enthusiasts.

The book-loving community can catch the first glimpse of the shortlisted books at an exhibition to be held at the MADA Gallery, Monash University Caulfield campus, 900 Dandenong Rd, 20–25 March 2013. 

Award recipients will be announced at the exhibition opening night on 20 March 2013. 

International jurors James Langdon and Layla Tweedie-Cullen will speak about their work at a free public lecture, to be presented at the State Library of Victoria, Village Roadshow theatrette, on 18 March 2013 from 6pm.

For guidelines and to nominate visit the Most Beautiful Books – Australia and New Zealand website.
Nominations close 1 March 2013.

The Most Beautiful Books – Australia and New Zealand exhibition will be held 20–25 March at MADA Gallery, Monash University Caulfield Campus. Entry is free.

MADA Gallery is part of Monash Art Design & Architecture at Monash University and is open 10am–5pm Monday–Friday and 12–5pm on Saturday. 

For further information, visit the MADA Gallery website



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