donderdag 2 december 2010

50 Jahre Madaus: Eine aufgeschlossene Firma Barbara Schulten Gerry Badger's Choice of Company Photobooks Photography

50 Jahre Madaus: Eine aufgeschlossene Firma.  Köln-Merheim: Dr. Madaus & Co., [1969].
This photography book was especially created for the 50th anniversary of a German pharmaceutical firm.  Founded in 1919, Madaus is still a major drug company although no longer with the homeopathic focus of its early years.
A whimsical and creative tour-de-force, the work is more of an artist’s book than a company rag.  It includes a variety of clever and irreverent references to the firm’s work and activities. In its 72 pages of photomontages and collages, printed on heavy laminated card stock, it contains an array of pop-up inserts, pull-out tabs, , tipped-in ephemera, a reader reply card requesting response to the book and an eight-page “Kochbuch”.  This item is a direct reference to the mother of the founders of the firm, who worked as an unlicensed healer before her sons went into business.  Another memorable fold-out display shows a white rat that squeaks when opened.  There is also a color fold-out poster of a 1930s advertisement for the firm.  The photographer Barbara Schulten and the editor Siegfried Leuselhardt were given a great deal of leeway in presenting the firm and its operations.  The work they created to commemorate the history of the company has a unique presence in the history of photography publications. Dr. Madaus, "one of the world's leading producers of pharmaceuticals Eine aufgeschlossene Firma was designed as a 'Pop art' extravaganza similar to Warhol's Index (1967) Not only a cornucopia of design and layout ideas, it features several pop-up pages in the style of a children's book. 

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