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Bellini/Mategna, Fondazione Querini Stampalia

Contributed by Florian Hardwig on May 24th, 2018. Artwork published in
March 2018
    Source: License: All Rights Reserved.

    Until 1 July 2018, Fondazione Querini Stampalia in Venice, Italy presents the exhibition “Bellini/Mantegna. Two Masterpieces Compared”. Two depictions of the same subject — the Presentation of Jesus at the Temple —, one by Giovanni Bellini, the other by Andrea Mantegna, are shown side by side for the first time in history.

    At first glance they look completely alike, and yet you understand that the two mirror-works have completely different personalities. But who came up with the marvellous composition?

    The design process was characterized by concepts such as comparison and mirroring. The two artists are represented in a balanced way, communicating at the same time the stylistic differences. The mirrored construction allows reading the image in two ways. The logotype is based on two typefaces derived from Roman capitals (used by both artists within their works), opting for a more graceful style for Mantegna and a more linear style for Bellini. This choice is derived from the comparison of the two works, where Mantegna’s gives greater sacredness to the figures, embellishing them with haloes and decorations, while Bellini’s places the characters in a more familiar and human dimension. [paraphrased from the Italian press text]

    The font chosen for Mantegna is Charlemagne Bold. Carol Twombly’s display typeface is inspired by versal capitals of late tenth-century England which in turn revived classical Roman letterforms. Bellini is typographically represented by a customized pairing of elements found in History, Peter Biľak’s playful layer system based on Roman inscriptional capitals. The wordmark combines History 04, a monolinear sans serif skeleton, with History 09, a layer of long tapered serifs. Of the latter, only the top serifs were used. The proportions of E and L were adjusted, maybe to compensate for the different lengths of the two names.

    Christoph Dunst’s Novel Sans is used for secondary information on the poster and the book cover as well as for the texts in the exhibition. The standard typeface used in the visual identity of Querini Stampalia is Futura. It here appears for the museum’s name alongside the stylized ‘Q’ mark which was designed by Studio Camuffo in 2002.

    ​Exhibition design by We Exhibit. Graphic design together with Studio Visuale.

    Kudos to Rinaldo for the helpful pointers — grazie mille!

    Source: Fondazione Querini Stampalia. License: All Rights Reserved.
    Source: Silvia Scocco. License: All Rights Reserved.
    Source: Silvia Scocco. License: All Rights Reserved.
    Source: Silvana Editoriale. License: All Rights Reserved.

    The catalog accompanying the exhibition is published by Silvana Editoriale.

    Source: Fondazione Querini Stampalia. License: All Rights Reserved.

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