Aeronautics in the Backyard is a mythical, fairytale-like photo series about the dream of flying, freedom and creativity. All over China, in the most unexpected of places, farmers rise up to build their own aircrafts. They don’t work in fancy hangars with all the equipment one could wish for, they simply play around in their backyards, recycling scrap metal and using household tools. They are self-educated, self-employed and penniless. Xiaoxiao Xu (CN/NL) recorded their tales, took pictures and simultaneously collected many original aircraft drawings and technical documents.

This project by Xiaoxiao was very structured, in the way that she portrayed eight different aeronauts. Therefore we decided for the design on the book to reference an archive: we used an archival cardboard for the cover and used a monospaced font throughout the whole book. There are also ‘title pages’ for each aeronaut, showing some basic information about their aircraft, and we gave the serene images all the space they needed.

Aeronautics in the Backyard
Xiaoxiao Xu, 2016

208 × 298 mm, 160 p (EN)
offset-printed softcover with
foil stamp on the front cover

Edit i.c.w. Xiaoxiao Xu
Design i.c.w. Rob van Hoesel
Text edit by Rosie Heinrich
Lithography by Marc Gijzen
Print by NPN Printers (NL)
Binding by Patist (NL)

ISBN: 978-94-92051-19-6
Published by The Eriskay Connection
€ 32 (more information)