The publication »T.B.A.« contains ten rules by Kurt Tucholsky — written for businessmen that need to hire artists — published in a Berlin newspaper in 1928. These rules were (re)shuffled using a text generator and each of the 200 printed versions was laid out differently at the beginning and end of the publication — an allusion to the often chaotic beginning and ending of a business relationship.

DIN A 5, 40 pages, b/w laser printed, folded, edition of 200 versions.
Buy here or at Mzin, Leipzig or at Printed Matter, NY or at Ed. Varie, NY.
Part of the Booklet Zine Library, Tokyo.

»T.B.A.« is set in a typeface called »Mondra« — an anagram of »random«. To imitate the appearance of handwriting, each stroke style and downstroke of each character is randomized. Just like actual handwriting, no two letters are identical. The variable downstrokes transport various emotions according to their lengths – from precise and timid to brash and confident.

Publication and typeface designed and coded by Martin Borst using PHP/PDFlib.
The typeface »Mondra« won the TDC Prize at the Tokyo Type Directors Club Annual Awards 2012.

Hands on Papers

In 2011 Johannes Tolk and Martin Borst founded the independent publishing house »Hands on Papers«, featuring various kinds of self-initiated printed matter.

Garbage Publications

Twice a year, the people of Karlsruhe—­a city in the south of Germany—take the things that do not matter to them anymore, down from the basements, out on to the streets. The next day, pub­lic ser­vants show up to collect these objects and take them away. The few hours between the disposal of old belongings and the arrival of the gar­bage men are when the hunt happens for retrievers in search of all kinds of things. These people may be inflicted with youth, poverty or curiosity.

Martin Borst and Johannes Tolk en­gaged in a re-evaluation of things that are perceived to be worthless. Their main interest is in the mani­fested knowledge that rests in discarded books, magazines, adver­tisements and printed materials. By creating new combinations of old materials through reduction and edi­ting, they attempt to transform this archive of rejects into an accessible format.

Borst and Tolk only use raw materials gleaned from piles of un­wan­ted thrown-aways. They add no­thing, besides a point of view.

Publication in Monopol Special Art Karlsruhe (2012)
Publication in »PIG Magazine #90« (2011)
Exhibition at »It’s a Book, it’s a stage, it’s a public place«, Leipzig (2011 & 2012)
Exhibition at »First Issue – Self-Publishing Book Fair for Design and Art«, Frankfurt a.M. (2011)

Garbage Publication: »Hans«

Hans sneaks off to an abandoned city …

DIN A 5, 44 pages, blue stencil printed, staple bound, edition of 100.
Source: Major H. von Dach, Gefechtstechnik, Kampf unter besonderen Umständen.
Edited by Martin Borst and Johannes Tolk, Karlsruhe, 2011.

Buy here or at Mzin, Leipzig or at Walter König, Köln or at Motto Shop, Zurich or at Motto Shop, Berlin or at Zine's Mate, Tokyo or at Printed Matter, NY. Part of the Booklet Zine Library, Tokyo

Garbage Publication: »Zum Geleit«

Young men in bathing suits demonstrating some form of body work, wrapping their arms and hands around each others’ bodies and heads.

DIN A 5, 20 pages, b/w laser printed, folded, 3rd edition of 50.
Source: Schwimmen und Retten, Lehrbuch der DLRG (lifeguard handbook), Braunschweig, 1970.
Edited by: »Einer von uns beiden«, Karlsruhe. 2010.

Publication in »Echoraum«, Wienand, Köln. 2012
Exhibition at the Bundeskunsthalle in Bonn (2011)
Exhibition at »I’ve Zine the Darkness« in Halle (2011)
Exhibition at »Approaches to What?«, Tokyo, Japan (2011)

Buy here or at Printed Matter, NY or at Motto Store, Zurich and Berlin or at Mzin, Leipzig or at Walter König, Köln. Part of the Zine Collection, London and the Booklet Zine Library, Tokyo

Garbage Publication: »Human Perspectives«

DIN A 5 & DIN A 6, 80 pages, b/w laser printed, needle stitched, edition of 1.
Stolen between 14 and 15 October 2011 in Frankfurt/Main.
Sources listed here.
Edited by Martin Borst and Johannes Tolk, Karlsruhe 2010.

Munitionsfabrik 17

»Munitionsfabrik« is the magazine of the Karlsruhe University of Arts and Design. Issue 17 discussed the subject of simulation. Martin Borst and Piero Glina tried to adopt the idea of simulation in their artwork by transforming a process of movement into a process of printing.

In short periods of time a man was photographed four times each. Borst and Glina excerpted one colour channel from each of those four photos and put them together into one new CMYK image. The movement is expanded into the colours cyan, magenta, yellow and black — the static part of the image stays black and white.

Publication in »:output 10« (2007)
Publication in »Ping Pong Project« (2008)
iF concept award (2008)

ISBN-13: 978-3-930194-03-2

»You Don’t Matter«

Martin Borst, Sebastian Cremers and Daniel Schludi converted a plotting machine into an output device, that can draw, scratch or cut with almost any traditional drawing technique, in order to achieve aesthetics looking neither drawn by hand nor produced with only a computer. Most interesting and inspiring are all the little mistakes this machine does, because of too much data, too much water, color, pressure etc. This expansion space describes the machine’s actual identity. No Image looks like the other. The project has originated from the workshop »Borderline Functionality« given by Jürg Lehni in 2006.

Here you can see some work which came out of the plotting machine …


Scholarship of the »HfG Förderverein« (2007)
Publication in »:output 10« (2007)
Publication in »Typomofo« (2009)
Exhibition at »I (heart) Gen Art« in New York City (2009)
Publication in »GRAPHIC #12« (2009)
Publication in »idPure 21« (2010)
Publication in »Der Welt über die Straße helfen« (2010)

HfG Schriftenreihe

Design of the book series of the Karlsruhe University of Arts and Design.

Martin Borst, Sebastian Cremers and Piero Glina focused on a rather decorative design to present the scientific content. Every decor plays with the specific content of each book.

Copy Right

A typographical magazine about the font Helvetica, its bad copy Arial and similar cases.
To compare the original font to its copy, Martin Borst and Piero Glina created a new font called RipOff, which subtracts one font from the other.

iF concept award (2005)
Scholarship of the »HfG Förderverein« (2005)
Publication in »:output 08« (2005)

Christmas tree

Poster and editorial design for the
5th Christmas Tree Exhibition at the University of Arts and Design Karlsruhe
12.12. — 21.12.2008

Layout & photography in cooperation with Sebastian Cremers & Daniel Schludi.

A condensed Typeface called »Hopfen«


Logo development and web design for MahaNakhon, a new high-rise complex located in Bangkok’s Central Business District, designed by architect Ole Scheeren, Office for Metropolitan Architecture (OMA).

Design by Martin Borst in cooperation with Michael Rock and Dave Yun at 2×4, inc., New York.

In former times women used harvestman legs to lengthen their eye leashes.
I wondered: How would it look like, if the legs were still alive?