50 YEARS OF THE JOURNAL

The decade of the 1960s was an exceptionally favourable one for the Czechoslovak cultural and intellectual world. It was during this time that a great many noteworthy initiatives arose across all areas of social life – and the scholarly sphere was no exception. The era’s overall enthusiasm, the emergence of new research trajectories and the desire to present the results achieved at the highest possible level were reflected, specifically, in the founding of the first scholarly journal treating architectural design and urban planning in Czechoslovakia. Architektúra & urbanizmus, journal of architectural and townplanning theory, to give its full title, was created in 1967 with its institutional base in the institute of Construction and Architecture of the Slovak Academy of Sciences in Bratislava, working in cooperation with the Department for the Theory of Architecture and Creation of Living Space of the Czechoslovak Academy of Sciences in Prague. At its founding, the journal was not only notable for its content alone – but no less for its form. The author of the original graphic design of the journal was the Slovak artists Tatiana Križanová Lizoň. Its square format and strikingly coloured cover, with the area occupied by the initials “a” and “u” in lower-case form, were a characteristic product of the Sixties. The hypertrophied icon ‘au’, layered one above the other, remained the recognisable logo of the journal for over twenty years. A change in layout only occurred in 1991, with the new graphic format and the journal logo, now in the form of a stylised ‘A&U’, designed by architect Peter Moravčík. While the actual logo then persisted up until 2015, the cover design and internal typographic organisation changed twice in the intervening years: in 1993 in the design of graphic designer Jana Sapáková and in 2009 from the plan of art historian Peter Szalay. As such, the design of the journal closely refl ected not only its internal dynamics, but also broader social circumstances. And the tradition of high artistic cultivation in the journal has continued up to today, to our refl ections on how to visualise its fiftieth anniversary issue. As a result, for the first time in the history of A&U, its form has become the subject of an artistic competition. This competition took place in two rounds in late 2014 and early 2015, and attracted several leading representatives of Slovak design: Juraj Blaško, Anna Jablonowska-Holy, Matúš Lelovský, Peter Liška, Boris Meluš and Ľubica Segečová. The jurors, Marcel Benčík, Ľubica Hustá, Henrieta Moravčíková, Mária Rišková and Peter Szalay, eventually entrusted the design of the journal to the hands of designer and instructor at the Bratislava Academy of Applied Arts Juraj Blaško. Hence the journal will now appear in a new form, one continuing the high visual level of the periodical, developing its potential, and while retaining continuity with the past moving the publication itself visually into the 21st century.