Helvetica, the movie
Tuesday July 31 2012
My Facebook and/or Twitter followers already knew I was watching Helvetica Sunday late afternoon. It is a feature-length independent film about typography, graphic design and global visual culture. It looks at the proliferation of one typeface (which recently celebrated its 50th birthday in 2007) as part of a larger conversation about the way type affects our lives. Helvetica has been shown at over 200 film festivals, museums, design conferences, and cinemas worldwide, and is now available on DVD. A quote from the movie:
Developed by the Swiss duo Eduard Hoffmann (Haas) and Max Miedinger (Stempel), the typeface was first called Neue Haas Grotesk, as a successor to Akzidenz Grotesk. But the font was to be marketed in the USA as well and therefore needed a new, international sounding name. Miedinger came up with Helvetia, the Latin name for Switzerland, which the transformed to Helvetica.
You can find this font on the website of the owner, Linotype. Though it’s the default font of Apple OS and software, it’s not a cheap font. That’s why Microsoft had her own clone created, called Arial. At first sight they look very similar, but look closer and you’ll see slight differences. Fontometer by I Love Typography is cool comparison site for these two typefaces!
The 70s and 80s were characterized by the post-modernism, people didn’t know what they were caring for, just that they were against globalization, dullness, sameness, routine and against the default typeface Helvetica.
There are more young typeface designers now than ever before in history, so who knows what the future of typeface design will bring?!
More about Helvetica, the typeface: Wikipedia
Photo credits: Still from the movie
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