Boy Vereecken: Back Matter

This publication can be considered an omnibus of sorts, accompanying the exhibition of the same name that took place at the MACRO – Museum of Contemporary Art in Rome in 2021.

The title of the exhibition, ‘Back Matter’, refers to all of the parts which follow the central body of a publication, such as an epilogue, a colophon, a glossary, an appendix, and so forth. The term, defining the material and narrative body that can offer reflections to the subject matter of a book, is used metaphorically in this case, in relation to the content of the exhibition.

The choice of an omnibus as the editorial structure for this publication is based upon Maximilien Vox’s Bibliothèque Imaginaire. Maximilien Vox was the driving force behind this prestigious French typographic yearbook that aimed to reunite disparate French printing houses after World War II. These issues largely contained vintage advertisements from printers, publishers and print-related services. A total of 74 different printers contributed material to these volumes, as did 17 different paper manufacturers. Hundreds of examples of lithography, collage, printed matter and all kinds of drawings and advertisements, from wine labels, to stationary, to bound menus, were brought together, unpaginated. Vox foresaw a restoration of equality between commercial printing, typesetting and the refined editions that characterized French book art before the war.