Recently TYPECON came to Atlanta on a week-long celebration of type and design. I attended Typeface, a documentary on one of the oldest wood print shops in the United States. The film is a fascinating and disturbing look at the disappearing trade of typography and printmaking in the digital era, and the importance of the perseverance and preservation of art.
IKEA fans are all a-Twitter over the company's recent font change from Futura to Verdana. Designed to be easy to read at small sizes (like catalogs and computer screens), Verdana will be used in IKEA's print and digital communications. What seems on the surface like a simple, subtle shift -- one that arguably fits the company's brand of streamlined, smart, affordable design -- has triggered an onslaught of negative reaction so filled with bile that one might think the company switched to Comic Sans or Jokerman.
The show will be “a chance for visitors to explore the very physical history of the typefaces they already know,” says Monotype’s Type Director Dan Rhatigan.
For reasons known only to the pop-culture gods, IKEA -- the Swedish retailer of cheap, lingonberry-flavored furniture and other shinola -- has suddenly become a ubiquitous presence in the ether. Example: in August, when the 2010 IKEA catalog came out, people went utterly bonkers because the designers had changed the print font from the familiar Futura to Verdana -- an esoteric difference, to be sure. The story rocketed to No. 2 on CNN.com's most-read list, according to Mona Astra Liss, IKEA's director of public relations. But for the passing of Sen. Edward M. Kennedy, the story might have gone to No. 1.
Volkswagen-owned car marque Audi is changing its logo for the first time since 1990, to reflect a more 'pure and clear' identity and to emphasis the brand's focus on design.
Thumbing through his local Swedish newspaper, Göteborg resident Mattias Akerberg found himself troubled by a full-page advertisement for Ikea. It wasn't that the Grevbäck bookcases looked any less sturdy, or that the Bibbi Snur duvet covers were any less colorful, or even that the names given to each of the company's 9,500 products were any less whimsical. No, what bothered Akerberg was the typeface. "I thought that something had gone terribly wrong, but when I Twittered about it, people at their ad agency told me that this was actually the new Ikea font," he recalls. "I could hardly believe it was true."