Book culture in St Gallen

The production of books has a long-standing tradition in St Gallen. Testimony to this are the city’s various libraries, which still hold a historical treasure trove of artistic manuscripts, wonderful examples of the earliest printing techniques and important holdings of contempo-rary book design. Well-known historical personalities shaped this tradition, among them numerous book artists of the early medieval monastery of St Gallen, but also the reformer, mayor and poet Vadian, whose book collection became the foundation of the Vadiana can-tonal library. One of the oldest newspapers in Europe, ‘Annus Christi’, was printed in the Imperial Abbey of St Gallen in Rorschach.

In addition, book design with sophisticated typography has a long tradition in St Gallen. For centuries, world-famous institutions and book designers have worked here, stimulated con-temporary discourse and attracted international attention with their books. Institutions such as the Henry Tschudy publishing house and book designers such as Rudolf Hostettler, Max Koller, Hans-Peter Kaeser and Jost Hochuli have shaped the tradition of books in St Gallen. Their students, including Gaston Isoz, and the agency TGG Hafen Senn Stieger continue this tradition, and young designers keep the book culture in sync with the times.

Detailed description




Roland Früh: Buchgestaltung in St. Gallen. St. Gallen, 2008

Hermann Strehler: Die Buchdruckerkunst im alten St. Gallen. Die Geschichte der Offizin Zollikofer. Vom «Wochenblatt» zum «St. Galler Tagblatt». St. Gallen, 1967

Jost Hochuli: Buchgestaltung als Denkschule: über die Symmetrie im Buch, über Funktion und Funktionalismus in der Buchttypografie und gegen die Ideologisierung gestalterischer Strukturen (Stuttgarter Schriftenreihe Typografie). Stuttgart, 1991

Jost Hochuli: Buchgestaltung in der Schweiz (Schweizer Kulturstiftung Pro Helvetia). Zürich, 1993

Jost Hochuli: Bücher machen. Praxis und Theorie. St. Gallen, 1996

Richard Hollis: Schweizer Grafik: die Entwicklung eines internationalen Stils, 1920–1965. Basel, 2006

Rupert Kalkofen: Das Büchlein der Bücher: 25 Jahre VGS Verlagsgemeinschaft St. Gallen (Edition Ostschweiz, Heft 5). St. Gallen, 2004

Robin Kinross: Jost Hochuli aus englischer Sicht. In: Jost Hochuli: Drucksachen, vor allem Bücher. Sulgen, 2002



Kanton St. Gallen
Amt für Kultur
St. Leonard-Strasse 40
9001 St. Gallen

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