Name, first nameBenedek TakácsYear of birth1993UniversityECALField of Interest / research fieldArt Direction in Typography / in Photography Title of projectMini books during the Communist era in Hungary (1956-1989)AbstractBeginning from the 1970s until the late 80s the production of mini books became extremely popular during the soviet era in Hungary. During the socialist era in Hungary from 1948 until 1956 the capacity of print shops was growing as high as 722%. The circumstances probably helped and offered an intense atmosphere where printers had the practice, capacity and resources to make mini books. The cause of the end of this era was the downtrend of the printing industry and the change of the political system in Hungary in 1989. Hungary became the biggest mini book publisher at that time. Censorship in Hungary as in other soviet countries played a major role in artist's and designer's work. Publishing and printing was strictly controlled. Based on several interviews with a graphic designer, a printer and a bookbinder I have conducted, I came to get an overview about how the system worked in the design and printing field and how the restrictions influenced the outcome of their activity during the socialist era through mini books.

Mini book is an experimental book format which works really well contextually in certain political situations. It can be a tool of propaganda with its charming format and scale. Or a secretly produced, inconspicuous object with forbidden content which is against the ruling political system.

The production of mini books needed good skills from the designer, printer and the bookbinder, because of the small size. It became a great challenge and playground of experiment with different contents, layouts and materials. With the help of mini books and contemporary articles I have collected, we are able to compare and analyse this medium through these materials published in Hungary during the 70s and 80s.
TutorsWayne Daly, Roland Früh