Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Frankfurt Bookfair underway

Every year the Frankfurter Buchmesse or Frankfurt Bookfair attracts many thousands of publishers, booksellers and writers from around the world; it is generally considered the world's largest and most prestigious bookfair.

The first visit we made was in 1986 and it proved very worthwhile in terms of business obtained. But as the fair has continued to grow, our visits have become less worthwhile. Maybe this is because people simply get overwhelmed by the sheer number of exhibitors, let alone the number of books and events. This writer remembers at the 2000 fair going to the launch of Sex for Dummies by Ruth Westheimer (given how small she is, she could almost have written Sex for Dwarfs), but after several glasses of wine provided for attendees, it became a blur literally.

After it's all over, you come away with a case full of catalogues, aching feet (despite the shuttle buses put on to take people around the grounds) and rather vague memories about what was discussed with who. Maybe it's a case of being there because you're expected to be there.

Anyway the above photo is of German publisher Taschen's stand at this year's fair, designed by architect Shigeru Ban - widely known for his use of paper and birch plywood as a structural element - inspired by the roof design of the new Centre Pompidou-Metz.

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