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Stegemann's treasure trove: flip calendars for the impatient

Stegemann's treasure trove
Subscriptions & booklets

V or recently on my store: What I was actually looking for, I have long since forgotten, but I found this little book. 46 by 98 millimeters in size, 60 pages thin, slightly grayed out, heavily worn. In any case, the dog-ears and the cracked adhesive binding show that it has often been used for what it was designed for around 40 years ago in the VW advertising department: as a flip book or 'flip calendar for the impatient'.

One Both brief and entertaining pleasure when you take the booklet in one hand, bend it vigorously with the other and, thanks to the tension, let the pages rush past the tip of your thumb. Then the illusion of a sequence of movements emerges from individual images - not as perfectly flowing into one another as the 60 half images per second of modern blue-ray technology, but in principle based on the same stroboscopic effect. And by reducing the means and motifs, it gets to the point in a much more striking way.

Customers should be kept happy

After all, according to the cover sheet, it is about a very simple message: When the time comes, VW will come. Not that such an assurance was really needed at the beginning of the 1970s, when the Beetle was built more than a million times a year and was just setting the production world record for the Ford Model T. Rather, all those customers should be kept in a good mood who would prefer to take their new crawly animal with them from the dealer instead of having to wait for weeks. but also the feeling of inactivity. Because with every new picture there is a small step towards the big goal: first only the man moves, then the car slowly takes shape around him. The same self-evocative formula hovers like a mantra over the first 58 pictures: 'My new VW is coming soon.' At the penultimate one it finally says 'Tomorrow my new VW will arrive', before the last one announces the redeeming message: 'Now it is here.'

' It runs and runs and runs ... '

Ingeniously simple and therefore simply ingenious, how VW conveyed everyday things, experiences and messages without big words. This reduced image and text language is in line with the legendary Käfer advertising campaign by the US agency Doyle Dane Bernbach, which was launched in theSixties invented slogans of unsurpassable clarity and conciseness: 'You know what you have' or 'It runs and runs and runs ...' No wonder that Volkswagen also launched a flip book for the Up: Both are relatively simple and small - and yet great cinema.


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