Pantheon will release a slue of Franz Kafka books in June with freshly designed covers. Imprint art director Peter Mendelsund designed the new look and he describes it as, “let some of the sunlight back in.”
Gone are the serious-man portraits and the drawings of giant insects. Instead, you’ve got all-seeing eyes variously set against monochromatic backdrops in bold purple, yellow, blue, and green. The font is cursive, which might look more like an artiste’s whimsical signature than a typeface someone actually designed is because it is a mashup of Kafka’s handwriting and a typeface based on Kafka’s handwriting, designed by Edenspiekermann called “Mister K.” Meta.
While they are bold and graphic, we think the design loses the essence of the story inside. They seemingly connect all his works as if they were part of a series as oppose to entities unto themselves. What do you think of these redesigned covers?