New Voice, AGI New Members 04/05
Edited and designed by Jianping He, published by Hesign, Berlin (DE) (2006), available from email@example.com; 280 pages, 16 x 21 cm, more than 340 color illustrations; softcover with ears; ISBN 3-9810544-5-8; in english and chinese; Euro 25 (about US$ 31); Stores and publishers 30 % Discount *(minimum of 5 books)
" This book shows the work of the new AGI members 2004/2005 and includes reports about the AGI Congress in Beijing 2004 and in Berlin 2005. The AGI unites the world's leading graphics designers and artists in a professional club of common interest and achievement. Its members have been collectively responsible for the identity design of most of the world's top corporations and institutions as well as for countless examples of globally known packaging, publications, illustration and posters. The AGI provides for friendship, mutual respect and the enjoyment of the company of the like-minded - even reassurance in the face of a sceptical world."
Georg Barber / Atak
The Alliance Graphique Internationale AGI used to be a secretive organization.
These top members of the international graphic design community like to hide their excellence in visual communication from us mere mortals, and this
applies particularly to their annual meetings and their publications. I was told, for example, in all seriousness, that I could buy the AGI
publication about F.H.K. Henrion for 200 US$, if I was really desperate to have it, the price has now gone up to more than 300 Euros on amazon.com .
However, a crack has recently opened in the stonewall: Jianping He, one of the youngest AGI members, famous poster book publisher and innovative book cover designer (as you can see from the cover above) has published a book on the two recent AGI meetings in Beijing and Berlin which is freely available to all for a modest Euro 25 ! The book gives a day to day account of the two meetings, including group pictures from the Great Wall or from the boating trip through the canals of Berlin, Niklaus Troxler dancing, Uwe Loesch shouting at a bear with a megaphone, Daniela Haufe's dog and so on. Memorable quotes found in the book include ".. design students in China have little in common with their fellows in the West: They're modest, disciplined, extremly hard working .." or "The french design group Grapus considered themselves the best designers of the world" or "Paul Davies from the UK is easily bored, a condition shared with many of his contemporaries it seems".
More to the point are detailed biographies with pictures of their work of the newly accepted AGI members, in Beijing in 2004:
and in Berlin in 2005:
So, if your goal in life is to become an AGI member, this book gives you an idea on how high the hurdles are, and whether the illustrious annual meetings are worth the steep membership fees. Also, it documents what AGI considers the leading edge of contemporary graphic design, as established by their peer review system.