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  • Unpacking the harsh history of the iconic Green Book travel guide in USA

    Before the Civil Rights Act of 1964 ended legal segregation in USA, a Harlem postal worker named Victor Hugo Green paved the safest paths for black Americans in the Jim Crow era.

    African Americans knew where they would be welcome through an iconic publication aptly named The Negro Motorist Green Book, a travel guide for New York City that listed businesses and private homes that would reliably serve African Americans which was first published in 1936. 

    The Green Book was created by Victor H. Green, a postal service worker from Harlem, N.Y., who began publishing the guide to help African Americans avoid, as he put it, "embarrassing moments" after motorists started exploring long-distance roadways including Route 66, the nation's first transcontinental highway.

    Today, Green's rare paperbacks are more than just evidence of the hazards of travel faced by African Americans in Los Angeles before the passage of the Civil Rights Act in 1964.

    In an age of social media and 21st century racial justice movements such as Black Lives Matter, the Green Book stands as a reminder of a little-known African American history of the American road trip.

    Curated by Samantha De Tillio the exhibition Unpacking the Green Book: Travel and Segregation in Jim Crow America explores the history of The Green Book in an interactive project space through materials such as a library and reading area devoted to the topics of segregation, automobility, travel, and leisure, specifically as they relate to the black American experience in the midcentury; digitized copies of The Green Book; interactive maps that explore travel destinations included in it; and multiple film excerpts from upcoming documentary projects.

    It will also include two banners by Cauleen Smith, featured in the 2017 Whitney Biennial, and now in the permanent collection of the Museum of Arts and Design, and two sculptures exploring locations in Harlem and D.C. from William D. Williams’s 2012 Dresser Truck Project

    Unpacking the Green Book, Travel and Segregation in Jim Crow America is on through April 8 at the Museum of Arts and Design (MAD) in New York.  

    02Apr
  • Netflix is the latest leader to join the bespoke typographic tribe

    And now let the world debate on Netflix's bespoke font. "Is it any good? Is it boring? Is it smashing? Is it Netflix enough?" The online tribes are debating hard on the latest bespoke font to hit the market.

    Aptly named Netflix Sans the font was created by the company’s in-house design team with type foundry Dalton Maag for the company's ever-expanding  branding and marketing purposes.

    The bespoke choice of font brings Netflix into a "shockingly large league of big technology companies with their own custom fonts, alongside Apple (San Francisco), Samsung (SamsungOne), Google (Roboto and Product Sans, because naturally Google has font fragmentation), and Microsoft (sort of, depending on how you score Segoe)" reports Verge.
    Per the project design leader Noah Nathan, Netflix chose to create its own font for "unique identity" and, duh, licensing Gotham is pretty pricey. 

    "With the global nature of Netflix’s business, font licensing can get quite expensive. Developing this typeface not only created an ownable and unique element for the brand’s aesthetic (moving Netflix away from Gotham, which is widely used in the entertainment industry), but saves the company millions of dollars a year as foundries move towards impression-based licensing for their typefaces in many digital advertising spaces" notes Noah Nathan.

    "The unique characteristics of the typeface were chosen very carefully as it is meant to serve both display and functional purposes. The clean and neutral lines give without taking, favoring art over distraction, and eliminating excess. The arched cut on the lowercase “t” is discreetly inspired by the cinemascopic curve that is so iconic to the brand’s wordmark and symbol. It has always been a dream of mine to work on a custom typeface, and I was lucky enough to be a part of this amazing project".

    Netflix Sans is poised to save the company "millions of dollars a year" and that's what matters, as bespoke typography is a wise choice for the leaders. 

     

    29Mar
  • Museum of Typography: time to enter the 4th International Poster Contest

    It is a definite call to arms for the lover of the letterforms. The Museum of Typography, Crete, Greece, has announced the 4th International Poster Contest about Typography and Printing, as the Greek word “τυπογραφία” to which the museum is dedicated, includes both arts.

    Participants are mainly professionals and students of graphic and visual arts, as well as amateurs who can translate their ideas into posters. The thirty posters that will be distinguished by the jury will be presented at an exhibition, hosted at the amphitheater of the Museum for a year, until the next competition.

    The aim of the contest is to connect the present and future of graphic arts to typography, printing and their history.

    The creators of the first three posters that will be distinguished, will also receive money awards. Dimitris Arvanitis, Yannis Garedakis, Lila Kalogeri, Antonis Papantonopoulos, Tzanetos Petropouleas and Juan Diego Restrepo, winner of the 3rd poster contest are the jury of this year’s competition. The poster exhibition will be inaugurated on Saturday 23 June 2018, at 7:30 pm. During the event the thirty best posters will be presented and their creators will receive honorary dinstinctions.

     Please note that all participants must send their creations by Sunday, May 13th 2018 by email to typography.poster@gmail.com. The entry should be accompanied by a text file containing the contact details and– optionally – a brief description of the project (up to 100 words).

     The history of the Museum of Typography is closely connected to the history of the newspaper Haniotika Nea. As early as in the beginning of the 60’s, the founder of the newspaper Yannis Garedakis started working as a journalist in the historical newspaper of Hania Paratiritis and the Athens newspaper Vima, while at the same time, he was a member of the journalistic team that covered the newspapers of the Lambrakis Press Company in Crete for 20 years. In 1967, at a difficult period for newspapers, Haniotika Nea was published for the first time.

    “I was still a young man when I first entered the field of the regional press, working for the historical newspaper Paratiritis, founded by the great Cretan statesman Polychronis Polychronidis. Not by choice, I should add. I did not regret it. In fact, I can honestly say that I was rather fortunate. There I was, all of a sudden, inside a basement, cooped up in a corner, preparing news transcripts – you see, there were no news agencies, no Internet, etc. back then – and making corrections. Across the room, in front of the typesetting benches, typographers assembled the type, letter by letter, composing the text. Standing up for hours, quiet, as if they were attending a sacred ritual, they arranged letters with the composing stick forming sentences, then the galleys with complete texts and finally the pages of the newspaper. Tired but proud at the end of the day. Last touch on their work – to me, it was a kind of caressing of the typographic plate, before the printing started. Everyone expecting the first page, the second, then the third… To get the newspaper at three or four in the morning and then go to bed. Exhausted but at the same time clearly satisfied. A few years later, those images came to mind when I started the publication of Haniotika Nea with the help of a few friends. Printers and Linotype operators, working together in dark basements and sheds, were putting up a fight for every form of publication. With love and respect towards the lifeless objects of their work… Those typographic objects, printing machines, typographers and operators should not be forgotten. Objects and machines should be maintained, the memory of typographers and operators should be honoured: that was the first thought that came to my mind” notes Garedakis.

    “The idea for the creation of a Museum of Typography started to spin around my head about three decades ago. The years passed, and the newspaper blossomed economically thanks to its readers and advertising clients. At that point began the quest in the wonderful world of typography and its people and the journey leading to the foundation of the Museum. This quest, of course, would not have reached its destination had it not been for Michalis Grigorakis, my old friend and partner, who shared my dream and joined me in this journey.”

    The Museum was inaugurated on May 2005.

    20Mar
  • Kontrapukt’s latest typeface responds to ambient sounds

    So what will eventually happen when typography responds to the sounds that surround it?

    The answer is on display in Goerteks R&D Headquarters in Qinbao, China. The China-based tech, electronics and acoustics company worked with Danish design studio Kontrapunkt and Nippon Design Center to create a custom typeface which responds to sound.

    Aptly named “Sonic Typeface” the font changes its appearance through different frequencies and waveforms (sine, triangle, etc) as it responds to urban environments.

    Using Opentype technologies, Kontrapunkt and Nippon Design Centre have created a new typeface for digital signage that responds to ambient sound through reshaping and morphing. The font has been designed to convey a ‘creative, bubbly personality’ that echoes the brand’s young workforce.

    Experimental and groundbreaking the future is nigh and is already making waves.

    07Mar
  • TwoPointsNet strikes Gold with ESPN’s latest custom typeface

    Gold Rush is the latest issue of ESPN The Magazine. For this special publication which sees ESPN and ESPN W to join forces on bringing the female athletes participating in the Winter Olympics in Pyeong Chang into the spotlight TwoPoints.Net delivered its best.

    The graphic design studio was commissioned to design the custom typeface of this issue, as well as a set of pictograms, illustrations and layouts. This is the biggest commission for TwoPoints.Net by ESPN so far and “while the typefaces TwoPoints.Net developed for the NBA and NFL issue were extremely dark and bold, the typeface for the Winter Olympics issue is colorful and light”.

    The design studio TwoPoints.Net was founded in 2007 with the aim to do exceptional design work. Lupi Asensio, Martin Lorenz and Elio Salichs are already running for gold. Enter the games here

     

    06Mar