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Campaign on Paulsplatz: 75 chairs – 75 stories | 75 bookcases have surprises in store | The Messeturm becomes a book pile

In 2023, Frankfurter Buchmesse (18-22 October) will celebrate its 75th anniversary. A reason to bring its eventful history to life once again and at the same time look expectantly to the future: under the motto "And the story goes on", the anniversary campaign - which was developed together with the Frankfurt creative agency Vier für Texas - combines the memory of historical milestones with an outlook on the next chapters. To mark the occasion, Frankfurter Buchmesse has teamed up with the City of Frankfurt to bring the history of the fair into the present and make it a tangible experience beyond the exhibition grounds. The anniversary activities in Frankfurt's city centre are sponsored by the City of Frankfurt and take place in close cooperation with City Marketing.

"Frankfurter Buchmesse and the City of Frankfurt are natural allies. We have, historically, established a very close connection. What began in 1949 as a small book show in Frankfurt's Paulskirche – with the participation of 205 German publishing companies – has established itself over the decades as the largest international book fair in Frankfurt. Every October, the world looks to Frankfurt when authors, publishing professionals, rights and licencing dealers, as well as high-ranking guests from the worlds of culture, politics and business from over 100 countries, come to Frankfurt. So basically, we are celebrating a joint 75th anniversary!", says Juergen Boos, Director of Frankfurter Buchmesse, about this cooperation.

"Every year in October, the international book fair makes Frankfurt the world capital of books, a global centre of cultural attention. On the occasion of its 75th anniversary, it shows itself in even greater splendour. I am very happy that the fair has overcome the COVID years and is thus once again ensuring literary life, outside the fairgrounds, in the city. This is Frankfurt's fifth season of the year", says Dr. Ina Hartwig, Head of the Department of Culture and Science of the City of Frankfurt am Main.

Stephanie Wüst, Head of the Economic Affairs Department of the City of Frankfurt and Chairwoman of the Supervisory Board of Messe Frankfurt, says: "Frankfurter Buchmesse is a flagship for our city and makes us proud. It transports Frankfurt's great past and present publishers, and authors, into the future. Above all, however, the book fair sets an example for diversity and freedom of opinion that is perceptible all over the world. The 75 people who have told their stories about Frankfurt and the book fair in this anniversary year bear witness to this. Frankfurt citizens and more than 300,000 visitors to the fair will be able to listen in on these stories on 16 October on Paulsplatz, and later on the fairgrounds, and find out what significance their Frankfurter Buchmesse has had on the rest of the world. I am particularly pleased that with this great project - and several others - we have succeeded in emphasising the close connection between the city and Frankfurter Buchmesse. I was therefore happy to support the 75 Chairs - 75 Stories project with City Marketing."

Over the next few weeks, the anniversary of Frankfurter Buchmesse will be visible throughout the city via a variety of activities and advertising measures.

Campaign on Paulsplatz and the exhibition grounds: 75 chairs – 75 stories 

"Without Frankfurter Buchmesse and without books, my life would not have been so wonderful," says Michel Friedman, a lawyer, publicist and philosopher living in Frankfurt am Main. This formative sentence is only a small excerpt of what lies behind the "75 chairs – 75 stories" campaign. On 16 October, Paulsplatz - where the first book fair was held in 1949 - will be transformed into a place of stories: From 10 a.m. to 8 p.m., 75 chairs will be distributed on the square. They will lead via individual QR codes to personal stories of 75 very different people and their connection with Frankfurter Buchmesse. The storytellers include well-known names as well as visitors and international book fair friends, but also people who are more active behind the scenes of the fair. Afterwards, the 75 chairs will be transported to the Agora on the fairgrounds from 17 to 22 October.

On 16 October at 11.00 a.m., there will also be a press event for the campaign on Paulsplatz – Juergen Boos, Karin Schmidt-Friderichs, Peter Kraus vom Cleff, Ina Hartwig, Stephanie Wüst, Michel Friedman, Peter Wirth, Ellen Harrington and several other participants will be there. Please register by 13 October at in a new window).

Bookcases have surprises in store 

Already, 75 bookcases in the city bear the Frankfurter Buchmesse anniversary design. Over the next few weeks, surprises will be added to them. Right up until the start of this year's book fair, admission tickets and other prizes will be hidden there. Clues about this campaign will be shared in the coming days via the social media channels of Frankfurter Buchmesse and of the City of Frankfurt.

Classic advertising campaigns in the city

The campaign's history-conscious and future-oriented approach is also reflected in the numerous advertising initiatives: From large posters in the city city and megalights on public info screens, the campaign's motifs will be played out in a variety of advertising formats: Advertising spaces on buses and train stations will attract potential visitors and passers-by throughout the city, while positioning at the airport and main train station will welcome arriving passengers.

The Messeturm becomes the world's largest book pile

During the week of the fair, the Messeturm will be transformed into the world's largest book pile – with the help of AR tracking technology from the Berlin software developer ZAUBAR. To do this, all you have to do is call up a link and then simply point your smartphone camera at the Messe Frankfurt landmark. A book tower will then appear, which can also be customised.

Note: The campaign on Paulsplatz is sponsored by the Department of Economics and Law of the City of Frankfurt am Main and City Marketing. The bookcases and the advertising spaces are sponsored by the Department of Culture and Science of the City of Frankfurt am Main.