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You are here: Home / Conferences / Montréal 2017 / Programme

Safekeeping of the typographic heritage in the Book Art Museum of Łódź

When Thu 14 Sep 1230
Where UQAM, Cœur des sciences
Who Borys Kosmynka

A country’s typography is heavily influenced by its native languages, and each has a different type case layout serving as proof. This is not unlike typographic history, which, in Poland, hints at a colorful past that is yet undiscovered.

In the basement of the Book Art Museum in Łódź lies a treasure that was almost lost. In 1992, the owner of the museum, Janusz Tryzno, acquired the inventory of the National Type Foundry in Warsaw after the typecasting and classic printing industry collapsed. From the scrap heap, Tryzno saved a quarter of a million matrices along with—literally—tons of metal type. Cases full of letters and typecasting machines (and dust!) were brought to Łódź for safekeeping.

A documentation project on this treasure began in 2016. What’s more, these amazing machines are still operational and being used by contemporary designers. In addition to serving as a living museum in the form of a typecasting and letterpress workshop, a series of experimental projects and the digitization of important typefaces is ongoing. This important piece of Polish typographic history holds a legacy to be shared—one that is inspiring passion throughout the design community.

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