In 1980 an entrepreneurial 18 year old with an extensive comic collection opened a comic book shop in Cologne, to trade and sell this colossal compilation. Benedikt Taschen’s store grew quickly and within a year he was publishing catalogues to promote the titles he held. Benedikt’s big break came in 1984 when he bought 40,000 copies of a René Magritte book with English text and resold them for a fraction of their original price. The roaring success of this daring move demonstrated to Benedikt that the art-book market needed to be made readily available to everyone and he felt cultural enlightenment should not only be reserved for the wealthy. From this point onwards he started reprinting books under the Taschen name for budget prices and then went on to publish his first original art-book titled Picasso.
Over the next few years as Taschen established subsidiaries throughout the world, they branched into new areas such as design, photography, architecture, lifestyle & classics which cemented the brand’s reputation as publishers of outstanding art-books of every kind. The company entered a new era in the late 1990s and started publishing oversized limited editions like Helmut Newton’s SUMO, the first copy of which was signed by over 80 celebrities and went onto sell for $320,000, the most expensive book sold in the 20th Century.
Since then the Taschen brand has grown into one of the most successful, not to mention unique publishing houses in the world. They continue with their mission to enrich the world of books by offering a vibrant selection of affordable titles blended with extravagant limited editions to suit every taste and budget.
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