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$79,723
pledged of $105,590 goal
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All or nothing. This project will only be funded if it reaches its goal by .

$79,723
pledged of $105,590 goal
backers

All or nothing. This project will only be funded if it reaches its goal by .

About

Vaughan Oliver is one of the few graphic designers with an instantly recognisable style. There’s no mistaking his trademark mysterious and enigmatic album covers – a Vaughan Oliver record cover doesn’t need a design credit. 

Growing up in the North of England, the young Oliver spent most of his school days in the ‘art room’ where he developed an interest in Surrealism and the work of Salvador Dali. The local record shop was his ‘art gallery’.

After studying graphic design at the Newcastle-upon-Tyne Polytechnic, he went south to London to work for one of the big design groups. But Oliver wasn’t made for the world of commercial graphic design, and a chance encounter with the record label owner Ivo Watts Russell led to a 30-year marriage between Oliver and the cult indie label, 4AD. 

 

 

Oliver’s covers for 4AD bands such as Pixies, Cocteau Twins, Dead Can Dance, The Breeders and This Mortal Coil have passed into graphic design legend. He has also worked for David Lynch, Scott Walker, and a select group of non-music industry clients. 

‘I like to elevate the banal through surrealism,’ he has said. ‘Mystery and ambiguity are important weapons in a designer’s arsenal. I try to make images where you don’t always get “the message” straight away – but these things leave a hook in you. Leaving some space for interpretation is important.’ It’s this willingness not to be explicit, not to spell everything out, that makes Vaughan Oliver such a distinctive voice in graphic design.

 

 

Despite his status as one of the great individualists of graphic design, Vaughan Oliver is an enthusiastic collaborator. He has frequently combined forces with photographers, designers and illustrators to make deeply resonant work. 

His collaborators include Marc Atkins, Nigel Grierson and Simon Larbalestier (photography); Chris Bigg and Timothy O'Donnell (graphic design); Terry Dowling and Ian Pollock (illustration). It is one of Oliver’s greatest attributes that despite being a committed collaborator, his personal signature is always visible.

 

 

 

After 40 years of creative activity, Vaughan Oliver has acquired a vast body of work. He’s the designer who never threw anything away. And now, thanks to University of the Creative Arts Epsom (the design school where Oliver has a Visiting Professorship) his huge collection of work has found a home.

The Vaughan Oliver Archive is a treasure house of graphic delights. Oliver has kept the stuff that other designers chuck away: proofs, running sheets, record labels, visuals, mock-ups, test prints, contact sheets and promo items are all carefully filed. 

Art boards with hand lettering, mechanical artwork for classic album covers, videotapes, books, and teenage sketchbooks are lovingly stored. Even the PMT prints that formed the basis of his many of his pre-digital artworks have been carefully packed away in archive storage boxes.

Visitors are welcome to view the archive by appointment, but not everyone can make the trip to Epsom, a small English town an hour from central London.

But now, there is the book of the archive. Spread over two volumes, it gives a detailed insight into the work of a great designer.

The Book

To produce a book that does justice to Vaughan Oliver’s great body of work, we need your help. Here are details of the book’s design, format and editorial content. The book comes in two volumes. Both volumes are packaged in a box, and come with a variety of extras. 

Specifications:

Vaughan Oliver Archive
Materials and fragments
Book No. 1.0

210mm x 280mm
432 page
CMYK throughout
Cover Stock: Munken Pure 300gsm
Book: Munken Pure 100gsm
Binding: Perfect bound
2x1 colour cover sticker (one ‘special’ and signed one not) Munken Pure 100gsm

Vaughan Oliver Archive
Remnants and desires
Book No. 2.0

210mm x 280mm
160 page
1x black throughout
Cover Stock: Munken Pure 300gsm
Book: Munken Pure 80gsm
Binding: Perfect bound
2x1 colour cover sticker Munken Pure 100gsm

Box
Printed 1 colour white silk screen both sides
Brown e flute corrugated

Paper stock subject to change

The Rewards 

The list of rewards offer an unrivalled opportunity to own material that has rarely been seen publicly. From signed proofs to visits to the archive conducted by Oliver himself, the list is a cornucopia of delights. Take your pick! 

The Music

Music for Kickstarter film: Saliva – written and performed by Stefano Guzzetti. 
Published by Mute Song Limited.
Courtesy of Stella Recordings/Stefano Guzzetti — www.stefanoguzzetti.com

Unit Editions – the publishers

Unit Editions is an independent publishing company, producing books for an international audience of designers and followers of visual culture. The company was formed in 2010 by Tony Brook, Patricia Finegan (both Spin) and Adrian Shaughnessy. 

High quality design and production standards are partnered with insightful texts and informative commentaries to produce books on a wide variety of subjects that are either neglected or ignored by mainstream publishers.

To date Unit Editions has produced over 30 books and publications. Titles include: Paula Scher: Works (2017); Herb Lubalin: American Graphic Designer 1918–81 (2010); Lance Wyman: The Monograph (2015).

Unit Editions books are only available through their website and a handful of specialist book shops. Our books are shipped postage free to anywhere in the world. Superior protective packing is used to ensure that books arrive undamaged, and all large format books are shipped with protective corners. 

Risks and challenges

Unit Editions has successfully completed two Kickstarter campaigns to date, and is in the final stages of fulfilling a third (Octavo Redux). All three have exceeded their funding targets.

Unit Editions is experienced in the production and delivery of books and publications of all kinds. We only use high quality suppliers (printers, binders, etc.), and we distribute globally on a daily basis.

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    Pledge £5 or more About $7

    NAME IN BOOK

    Thank you for supporting this project.

    Your name will feature in a 'Thanks for supporting' page in the book and you will be kept up to date with all of the latest news.

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    Pledge £75 or more About $99

    THE BOOK

    A copy of Vaughan Oliver Archive book - two volumes
    + your name in the book
    + a set of 5 bookmarks

    Includes free shipping worldwide

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    THE BOOK - DELUXE

    A copy of Vaughan Oliver Archive book - two volumes
    + your name in the book
    + a set of 5 bookmarks
    + a set of 5 postcards
    + a poster
    + a set of 3 enamel badges

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    Pledge £318 or more About $419

    STUDIO PACK

    5 copies of Vaughan Oliver Archive book - two volumes
    + your name in the book
    + 5 sets of 5 bookmarks

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    Pledge £351 or more About $462

    BUNDLE 4

    A signed copy of Vaughan Oliver Archive book - two volumes
    + your name in the book
    + a set of 5 bookmarks
    + a set of 5 postcards
    + a poster
    + a set of 3 enamel badges
    + an overprinted proof from the archive

    Includes free shipping worldwide

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    Pledge £65 or more About $86

    THE BOOK (EARLY BIRD 1)

    A copy of Vaughan Oliver Archive book - two volumes
    + your name in the book
    + a set of 5 bookmarks

    Includes free shipping worldwide

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    Pledge £70 or more About $92

    THE BOOK (EARLY BIRD 2)

    A copy of Vaughan Oliver Archive book - two volumes
    + your name in the book
    + a set of 5 bookmarks

    Includes free shipping worldwide

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    THE SIGNED BOOK

    A signed copy of Vaughan Oliver Archive book - two volumes
    + your name in the book
    + a set of 5 bookmarks

    Includes free shipping worldwide

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    Pledge £215 or more About $283

    BUNDLE 1

    A signed copy of Vaughan Oliver Archive book - two volumes
    + your name in the book
    + a set of 5 bookmarks
    + a set of 5 postcards
    + a poster
    + a set of 3 enamel badges
    + a signed proofing sheet from the book

    Includes free shipping worldwide

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    Pledge £244 or more About $321

    BUNDLE 2

    A signed copy of Vaughan Oliver Archive book - two volumes
    + your name in the book
    + a set of 5 bookmarks
    + a set of 5 postcards
    + a poster
    + a set of 3 enamel badges
    + signed running sheet from the archive

    Includes free shipping worldwide

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    Pledge £308 or more About $406

    BUNDLE 3

    A signed copy of Vaughan Oliver Archive book - two volumes
    + your name in the book
    + a set of 5 bookmarks
    + a set of 5 postcards
    + a poster
    + a set of 3 enamel badges
    + a v23 metal bucket

    Includes free shipping worldwide

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    Pledge £351 or more About $462

    BUNDLE 5

    A signed copy of Vaughan Oliver Archive book - two volumes
    + your name in the book
    + a set of 5 bookmarks
    + a set of 5 postcards
    + a poster
    + a set of 3 enamel badges
    + a signed proof from the archive

    Includes free shipping worldwide

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    BUNDLE 6

    A signed copy of Vaughan Oliver Archive book - two volumes
    + your name in the book
    + a set of 5 bookmarks
    + a set of 5 postcards
    + a poster
    + a set of 3 enamel badges
    + a visit to the archive with personally conducted tour by Vaughan Oliver. Travel expenses not included.

    Includes free shipping worldwide

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