What does it take to design something that will effectively communicate the layers of conversations taking place on the continent’s campuses?
We always look forward to the quarterly release of the Chimurenga Chronic, that lusciously designed and illustrated Pan-African gazette. In this edition the Chronic focuses on the revolt taking place on Africa’s university campuses. But what does it take to design something that will communicate the layers of that conversation effectively, and with flavour?
Graeme Arendse, head designer at Chimurenga, explains: “Design is very much considered a part of the editorial process. In our weekly editorial meetings, design is discussed as much as the written content.”
The Chronic, Arendse explains, is made up of two sections – the broadsheet and the Chronic Books supplement. “Each of these has its own identity, so the consideration would be how does the design flow through each section, giving each its own identity, but still remain a coherent package?”
Most recognisable among the design elements of any Chronic is the typeface, a bold and brave sans serif. In the previous issue, it was translated into an Arabic script that was as recognisable as the Latin type they typically use. “We looked at various newspapers and publications around the globe which we admire and in the end it came down to trial and error,” Arendse says of the process to create it. I ask him what makes a well-designed object? He says, as though echoing the design of Chimurenga itself: “In my opinion, it balances functionality with aesthetic.” The Chronic is available for R95 at all good book stores and online at chimurengachronic.co.za
THE UNIVERSITY IN AFRICA The latest Chimurenga Chronic takes a turn to discuss the status of the African student