Wednesday, 9:00am
11 November 2009

Just Add Stock winner, Book series

The Penguin Magnum series

The Just Add Stock judges had little difficulty deciding the winner of the book series category: The Penguin Magnum Collection.

Six classic American works of non-fiction are covered by rare and unseen photographs from the Magnum archive, as previously discussed on the Eye blog by Robert Hanks (see ‘Photo realism’).

Top: John Hershey’s Hiroshima
Below: Norman Mailer’s The Fight

Penguin Magnum Edition - The Fight

Penguin Books have a long-standing relationship with Magnum, often searching their archive for photographic book covers. Mark Power, Photographer and Vice President at Magnum Photos in London, comments: ‘Magnum is proud to continue this tradition with this latest set of books, where Penguin's choice of images range from the quirky to the classic; these are photographs that truly represents the history and great diversity of Magnum Photos.’

Penguin wanted a cover design that would reflect the style and substance of six classics of American reportage: John Hershey’s Hiroshima, Andrew Chaikin’s A Man on the Moon, Hunter S. Thompson’s Hell’s Angels, Norman Mailer’s The Fight, Nick Tosches’ Hellfire and Truman Capote’s In Cold Blood (below). Magnum’s photojournalistic images - striking yet previously unpublished - fitted the bill, and Publishing Director Rowland White found that ‘it suddenly was impossible to imagine doing it any other way. The Penguin Magnum Collection was a partnership that immediately felt right.’

Penguin Magnum Edition - In Cold Blood

The actual books devote as much space as possible these wrap-around photographs: the author and title are printed on a removable sticker, and the barcode is squashed onto the spine. It’s just as well, because these stock images deserve to be appreciated in full. As Robert Hanks discovered in his blog, ‘the front is quite deliberately only half the story, or less: the image wraps right around the book and in several cases it’s only the back cover that makes sense of it.’

Penguin Magnum Edition - Hell's Angels

Above: Hunter S. Thompson’s Hell’s Angels
Below: The Penguin Magnum Collection

Penguin Magnum Editions

Just Add Stock: Book series / Penguin Magnum Collection
Art director: John Hamilton
Images: Magnum Photos

To see the winnners, plus all the highly commended entries, read our article about Just Add Stock in Eye 73, out now!

Eye is available from all good design bookshops and online at the Eye shop. For a taste of the magazine, try Eye before you buy.