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You are here: Home / Conferences / Antwerp 2018 / Programme

Closing the circle

From foundry type to digital fonts and vice versa
When Wed 12 Sep 1630
Where AP Hogeschool 2
What Track 2
Who Frank Blokland
The first part of the DTL [Gros]Canon Project comprises the digitization of three types from the Flemish Renaissance punchcutter Hendrik van den Keere (ca.1540–1580): Gros Canon Flamande (textura type, 1571), Gros Canon Romain (roman type, 1573), and Canon d’Espaigne (rotunda type, 1574). The three apparently completely different models show an unexpectedly far-reaching intrinsic systematization and standardization across them. During the production of the digital revivals based on the aforementioned types from Van den Keere, the outcomes of Blokland’s PhD research concerning standardization and systematization were taken into account. This research was conducted to test the hypothesis that Gutenberg and his peers developed a standardized, systematized, and even unitized system for the production of textura type, and that subsequently this system was used for the production of the morphologically related roman type. The second part of the DTL [Gros]Canon Project comprises the cutting of a small number of punches and the striking of related matrices, based on the digital revivals, by Stan Nelson. This punchcutting process actually closes the circle: historical foundry material was thoroughly investigated to produce digital revivals and in turn the revivals form the basis for reproductions in punches, matrices, and eventually foundry type.

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