Date: March 20, 2019 to March 20, 2019
Where: Grolier Club, 47 East 60th Street, New York, New York, United States, 10022
Event Type: Arts & Theater
Ticket Price: N/A
Running, Walking, and Standing: The Three Kinds of Letterforms It’s often said that the history of European scripts – perhaps of all scripts – can be summarized as a series of oscillations between walking hands and running hands; that is to say, the formal and the informal or the discontinuous and the cursive. Typography, in general, is a much more formalistic art than writing, because formality is implicit in its mechanical foundations. Typographic letters tend to walk rather than run, and some of them seem more inclined to stand stock still. Nevertheless, there was a time when European typography fell head over heels in love with cursive forms. The love affair took place not in Latin but in Greek, but it lasted a full century and has left us a rich and much-neglected legacy. I have a hunch that the elaborate Greek fonts cut during this period – especially those cut for Robert Estienne by Claude Garamond – can tell us something not just about our typographic past but also about the typographic future. Robert Bringhurst is a poet, linguist, and typographer. His books include The Elements of Typographic Style (now in its 4th edition) Palatino: The Natural History of a Typeface, and The Typographic Legacy of Ludovico degli Arrighi.