Reference is minimal bookend created by Brooklyn-based industrial designer Henry Julier. His work is guided by a strong belief in design as a problem-solving tool, as a way of recognizing and forming relationships between ideas and reality, and as a method for improving the connections between people and the products they use.
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The design was initiated by a couple whose exhibit within the LA Art Book Fair is called In Support of Books. He was interested in sheet steel bookends as a starting point for their economy of material as well as their overall durability. While most bookends do a fine job with normal paperback books, heavier books, or even the designer’s ever-expanding collection of vinyl, caused the normal sheet steel bookends to flex.
Julier was also finding lighter bookends difficult to adjust under heavy loads. The need for a heavy, stiff sheet steel bookend that didn’t rely on downward pressure from books to stay put, as well as being sympathetic to being picked up and plopped down at will, led to this design. The round top flange is designed so users have enough material to grab onto.
Photos by Shengning Zhang.