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Zweikommasieben #23
Page 23

Zweikommasieben #23

Our latest Page 23 sits happily in the 23rd issue of Swiss contemporary music mag Zweikommasieben.

Every issue of the magazine has appeared in a different page size and design, but they alway reflect its Swiss origins in terms of typography and grid. And this Page 23 is all about the grid. 

The page sits halfway through a transcribed conversation between three members of Bristol collective Young Echo, British-Colombian poet Daniela Dyson, and journalist Conor McTernan. Publishing recorded words from multiple speakers in turn is always a challenge for the designer; even a two-way conversation can be hard to parse for the reader, the paragraphs relying on a bold name before each statement, interrupting the flow of words.

Here, designers Dorothee Dahler and Kaj Lehmann have turned a problem—five contributors speaking in often quite brief sentences—into a virtue, using colour.

It seems terribly simple but it’s more complex than it appears, and the variety of colours is the key. Having five speakers rather than two is a positive, bringing the pages to life in five contrasting hues.

As well as each speaker’s words being represented by their distinctly coloured text, the words are also linked to each speaker’s name at the base of the page by a vertical grid: Conor McTernan’s questions are aligned to his name at the bottom of the page, always the first elements, followed by the other four speakers’ words staggered across the vertical space.

It feels like a conversation; there’s a good example of this at the end of the page, when Amos Child interrupts Daniela Dyson’s orange paragraphs with a quick ‘I don’t know about that’ in green.

It’s also worth noting the addition of footnotes in the form of speech bubbles throughout, breaking up the rigid structure of the pages.

Editorial team: Guy Schwegler, Helena Julian & Mathis Neuhaus


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