Page 17 - Novemberr 2015
P. 17


through phototypeseƫng to digiƟsaƟon–             gothic faces, as there were no overhangs nor
which can be seen in cutom typefaces with         italics; the Linotype matrix had problems line
an intended use and purpose. Early in the         seƫng the overhangs. So when gothic faces
development of Univers, FruƟger worked with       went out of fashion, Linotype had to pull their
the other well known sans serifs: Akzidenz        markeƟng socks up, and H. Berthold AG—the
Grotesque and Neue Haas Grotesque (aka.           ones who mostly sold Univers in Germany
HelveƟca). More than ten years study with         and around the world—placed Univers under
a huge school-bias towards the sans serif         HelveƟca, as it appeared very poor on Linofilm.
leƩerform. Although what lies at Univers's
heart are the low-contrast thick to thin strokes  Teachings about the balance,
of Roman typefaces! Years later, under Walter     rhythm, and weight distribution
Käch in Switzerland, FuƟger made rubbings         of type, with a strong influence
of Roman inscripƟons, where the up-stroke is      on the language of design, the
thinner than a down-stroke and a brush-like       effectiveness of symbols, how
curve can show beauƟful variaƟons between         we communicate visually and
thick and thin stroke thickness. FruƟger was      the relationship between weight
able to compare carved inscripƟons with           and hierarchy of text.
the sans serif, since these were not contrast-
rich thick/thin Roman typefaces. Developing          It wasn't unƟl last year, that Linotype
drawings of leƩerforms on scrap card and          presented the New Univers as a corporate
sƟcking them together to develop a font style,    typeface (mainly for the German Market). It
FruƟger had expanded the type forms on            did so by firstly going back to the lead type
his pre-curser weights; thin, normal, semi-       Univers engraved in steel to measure off
bold and italic Grotesque with the gentle         the proporƟons to do the extensions. The
modulated stroke weights of Univers, to           delicate and harmonious forms, tending to
an enƟre font system (with the help of two        be a liƩle more stylish than HelveƟca, were
draŌsmen) for commercial success.                 looking good. Adrian FruƟger (re-enlisted)
                                                  took great pleasure drawing and sketching
I make the bricks, I am not the                   for the extreme weights; light and bold, as
architect. I just make good                       poles for interpolaƟon into the family of
bricks that graphic artists can                   weights, widths and slants. All the slants
build with.                                       were re-designed, althought the horizontal
                                                  strokes stayed the same as in the uprights.
   As casƟng a font in lead was a very            Again, the curvilinear strokes were corrected
expensive process and the reason why              by FruƟger's hand, using sissors to cut off the
perhaps only one or two typefaces came            excess. With the enlisted help of Reinhard
out each year– FuƟger only needed                 Haus, FruƟger sketched the correcƟons,
to prepare drawings, of which sixteen             marked them, drew them roughly and
alphabets could be placed photographically        photocopied them, cuƫng them out with
onto one plate for phototypeseƫng.                scissors. "This worked well, since the drawn
                                                  capitals are about 15 cm in height. Everything
   At that Ɵme, HelveƟca (Neue Haas               was edited further on screen (digitally)"
Grotesque) was set, marketed and                  before being released as a licenced typeface.
distributed under Linotype and Univers
under Monotype. Linotype was good for
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