PHAIDON: HOME OF THE VISUAL ARTS
Phaidon is the premier global publisher of the creative arts. We work with the world’s most influential authors to produce innovative books on art, photography, design, architecture, fashion, food, and travel, and illustrated books for children. Phaidon has a long and distinguished history as an art-book publisher with over 1,500 titles in print.
The company was founded in Vienna in 1923 by Dr Béla Horovitz and Ludwig Goldscheider. Horovitz named the company Phaidon (‘ai’ pronounced ‘i’ as in ‘wise’ – International Phonetic Alphabet) in reference to Phaedo, a Greek philosopher and pupil of Socrates, to acknowledge his love of classical culture. Horovitz created quality books at an affordable price while Goldscheider contributed elegant layouts and handsome production.
The classic, now familiar, archetypal Phaidon book was introduced in 1937 with large-format publications on Van Gogh, Botticelli, and the French Impressionists. Horovitz was a pioneer of the international co-edition.
MOVE TO ENGLAND
The arrival of the Nazis in Vienna forced Horovitz to move the company to England. For the next fourteen years, Phaidon books were distributed through George Allen and Unwin Ltd. Horovitz and Goldscheider expanded the large-format series to include books on Donatello, Bellini, and Michelangelo, many edited by Goldscheider himself.
After the war, the company launched an innovative programme of scholarly and popular art publishing. This included the monumental critical catalogue of drawings in The Royal Collection at Windsor Castle, begun in 1942, and an elegant ‘pocket’ series of art-history texts.
Entrepreneur Richard Schlagman acquired Phaidon Press in 1990 with the objective of re-establishing it as the leading publisher of books on the visual arts. The company’s headquarters returned to London in May 1991, with an energetic publishing program of new books, the revitalising of older standard texts, and the establishment of a global sales and distribution operation.
The company’s fortunes were revived, in part, via a return to Phaidon’s traditional values of excellent design and affordable prices. The books became recognised worldwide as being of the highest quality in terms of content, design, and production.
A NEW ERA
In October 2012, Phaidon came under new ownership and its new senior management team began the task of growing the company for the long term as the world’s leading publisher of books in the visual arts, food, and children’s markets.
With Headquarters in London and New York, and offices in Paris and Berlin, Phaidon now operates a global sales and distribution network, selling in over 100 countries and publishing books in English, Chinese, French, Spanish, Japanese, and German, and with an increasing number of publishing partners in further languages.
Phaidon’s beautiful illustrated books are treasured worldwide for their outstanding content and award-winning production, and feature the finest creative work from leading innovators in all areas of the arts, architecture, design, photography, interior design, travel, and food.