Winner of this week’s clever design sweepstakes comes to us from Britain. It’s this’s TankBooks project, in which several classic novellas and stories are being released in cigarette-style packages. (Thanks to the design site Veer for the link.) The titles include Conrad’s Heart of Darkness, Kafka’s The Metamorphosis, and Tolstoy’s The Death of Ivan Ilyich, all “packaged in flip-top cartons with silver foil wrapping and sealed in cellophane.”
TankBooks pay homage to this monumentally successful piece of packaging design by employing it in the service of great literature. Cigarette packs are iconic objects, familiar, tried and tested, and over time Tankbooks will become iconic objects in their own right.
As noted by Torontoist earlier this week in a post about Douglas Coupland’s latest art project, Penguin founder Allen Lane initially wanted his firm’s now-famous paperback line to be sold next to cigarettes.