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You are here: Home / Conferences / Montréal 2017 / Special Events

Special Events

Part of the parallel program to the main conference, ATypI features a series of social events, optional activities like intimate special collections visits and exhilarating type walks, and demos by local professionals.


Cocktail reception

When? Wednesday, September 13, at 18:30

Where? QUAM

Join us for a glass of wine and delectable cheeses and other nibbles prior to our National Keynote address by Canadian type design legend Rod McDonald.





WhenThursday, September 14, at 13:30

- Each crit will take 10 minutes.

- Experienced designers and novices alike are encouraged to submit their designs.

- Only one typeface per person is allowed. Multiple weights and styles are allowed, but one style is preferred.

- Please bring at least four printouts showing the full glyphs set and the font set in one or more of the ways in which the type is intended to be used. 2-4 pages is ideal. No type critique based on a screen showing only!

- Cameras and recording devices are welcome.

- Arrive early for the best view and sound.

Crits by Veronika Burian, David Jonathan Ross, and Gerry Leonidas.

* Please sign up for the type crit at the registration desk. 




Les Enseignistes de Montréal (The Signmakers of Montreal)

Film screening

WhenThursday, September 14, at 18:30

A nonlinear, interactive documentary about the histories of signmaking and signmakers in Montreal. Dir. Matt Soar (2017, Canada, in French and English)

Signs are all around us, but we rarely stop to think about how important they are in helping us to find our way around urban spaces, and participate in city life. Les Enseignistes de Montréal (The Signmakers of Montreal) explores this fascinating but overlooked aspect of urban culture. The film includes interviews with a veteran sign designer and a young sign painter; encounters with sign owners and collectors; visits to a neon studio and the city of Montreal’s sign fabrication shop; a tour of a permanent exhibition of signs; and, a profile of local artist Cheryl Sim, who recently re-purposed two old airport information signs for a gallery show about land rights and forced migration.

Notes by Matt Soar.





WhenFriday, September 15, at 13:00

What should we be addressing in the teaching of typography? What is essential if faced with a diminishing typography curriculum? What are your successes?

Please join HMCT Executive Director Gloria Kondrup and ArtCenter faculty Greg Lindy (LuxTypo) for a lively conversation over lunch on:

The Future of Typography + Education

This intimate forum is designed for educators and key industry leaders working outside of academia. This event will take place during ATypI’s Friday lunch break. Tickets are available by invitation and seating is limited.

> Sponsored by the Hoffmitz Milken Center for Typography.





Paul Shaw at the Rare Books and Special Collections of the McGill Library

WhenFriday, September 15, at 19:00

Where? Livres rares et collections spécial- isées, Bibliothèque de l’université McGill. Pavillon McLennan. 4th floor of the Humanities and Social Sciences Library on McGill’s downtown campus at 3459, McTavish Street. 

A visit to see Dwigginsiana with Paul Shaw, who has spent nearly 40 years researching the life and work of W.A. Dwiggins. The material in the William Colgate History of Printing Collection housed in the Rare Books and Special Collections of the McGill Library covers all of Dwiggins’ myriad activities: illustrator, calligrapher/lettering artist, type designer, ornamentalist, advertising designer, book designer, marionette maker, and author.

The visit to McGill Rare Books and Special Collections will include a peek at the ongoing exhibition on esteemed Canadian book designer and typographer,  Robert R. Reid with one of the co-curators, Ann Marie Holland.

Read more here 

* Please sign up for the visit at the registration desk. 




Atypique After Dark

Let’s end the night together! Dress your best and be ready for a fest as we close ATypI 2017 and bid a fond adieu to the magnifique city of Montréal. Starting at 8 pm, ATypI moves to 8 Queen, Sid Lee’s très glam gathering space. We’ll have delicious food, tempting libations, music for dancing, cozy spaces for conversation, and fun for everyone.

The biggest social event of the conference is sponsored by our good friends at Adobe Typekit, including a drink they’ve inspired, the Typekit Type-o-Rita. The big event wraps up at midnight, leaving you plenty of time to explore Montréal’s exciting late-night bar and club scene. See you there!

 > Sponsored by Typekit


When? Saturday, September 16, between 20:00-00:00

Where? Sid Lee, 8 rue Queen




Type Walk

WhenSunday, September 17,  between 10:00-13:00

Where? We will meet in front of Presse Cafe at the Metro station Guy-Concordia (green line) at 9:45 am. We will begin the walk at 10 am. 

Montreal is one of Canada’s great urban centers, noted for its rich array of excellent architecture spanning over three centuries. This makes it also one of the best places to see a wide variety of lettering, especially in the heart of the city: the Vieux-Port and downtown historical districts. Paul Shaw will lead a walk from the old harbour down St. Catherine Street, and then up St. Laurence Avenue, once the main commercial arteries of the city. Among the sights will be neon letters, painted shop fascias, ghost signs,  signage, letters carved in stone and cast in metal, and contemporary marks. This is an opportunity to look at lettering that is often unique and that has a physical presence not found with lettering on screen or paper.

Guided by Paul Shaw



Exhibitions, ephemera, books, and other wonderful things 


With a compelling cast of characters on the stage and workshop leaders imparting wisdom, ATypI is a haven for those seeking typographic enlightenment and community. But the conference also offers a vast array of visual delights and experimentation on the fly. Venture into our typographic wonderland of the past and present, with a glimpse or two into the future.

In the Salle Polyvalente and the Chaufferie, you’ll find exhibits of type and design from around the world. Save room in your luggage for treasures offered by booksellers, letterpress printers, archivists, and more.

Exhibitors and vendors include:

Type Directors Club (TDC)


Letterform Archive

Centre Canadien d’Architecture (CCA)

Hamilton Wood Type and Printing Museum



Royal Academy of Art (KABK)

University of Reading

And more!




Throughout the main program, a set of demos by local professionals will make you want to grab a pen and start drawing letters. Demos will take place at the Chaufferie. No need to register, just show up!


Calligraphy demos

13.9 Tool variations: Automatic Pen, Ruling Pen, Cola-Pen, Foam Core, Pine Cones, etc.: Calligraphic exploration lends itself well to numerous other tools than the regular metallic nib.

14.9 Textures and Blocks of Texts: Blocks of texts are an excellent way to create different calligraphic textures. Thicks and thins, rhythm and contrasts can lead to new, often surprising discoveries.

15.9 Demonstration: Calligraphy improvisation mixing different tools, hands, and letter shapes.

When? Wednesday–Friday (September 13–15) during lunch breaks.


Marco Chioini

 Marco Chioini, former president of La Société des calligraphes de Montréal, has been practicing calligraphy since 2003, and has been teaching it from 2009. A member of the calligraphy group Les Calmars since 2006, he has exhibited his works at the Laurentian Library of Turin, Italy as well as in various galleries in Québec. He is also Director of the upcoming International Calligraphy Conference, to be held in Montreal in the summer of 2019.

From a strong foundation in the rigorous structural study of historical scripts, Marco particularly enjoys continuing his research into more contemporary shapes, focussing on the rhythm, movement and context.




Fraktur brush calligraphy

14.9 A full Fraktur alphabet

15.9 A famous pangram


When? Thursday+ Friday from 15:30 

Christian Bélanger

 Christian Bélanger was born in Montréal in 1977. He graduated in electric bass at Cégep de Saint-Laurent in 1997, in graphic design at Cégep du Vieux-Montréal in 2000 (Au Mérite 1998–1999 scholarship recipient), and in graphic design at Université du Québec à Montréal in 2003 (recipient of the Mention of Academic Excellence).

After his studies, Christian worked as a freelance and independent graphic designer, mainly in the cultural field with several artists (Chants Libres, Oxingale Records, Stéphane Gladyszewski, Serge Barbeau, Laurent Guérin, etc.), graphic design studios (KO création, Atelier Chinotto, Fly Studio, MP1, etc.), publishing houses (Le Quartanier Éditeur, Les Éditions Écosociété and Le Lézard Amoureux), and other interesting clients (Typothèque 2Rebels, Revue Liberté, etc.).

Christian’s work got recognized at the Grafika graphic design competition, Applied Arts magazine (for a project designed with KO création), and other now defunct competitions. He also got mentioned in the magazines Creative Review and Grafika for the design of his font Knitmap, Grafika’s Website (now for different projects, and was interviewed on the radio show Vous m'en lirez tant (at the Première Chaîne de Radio-Canada) for his book cover designs. Finally, in 2007, Christian’s work has been exhibited at the “Les prix Grafika, 10 ans de graphisme au Québec” exhibition.

In March 2011, hungry for new work experiences, he joined the Cégep Marie-Victorin graphic design department’s team of teachers to broaden his knowledge while helping students on their journey. In his free time, Christian enjoys practicing calligraphy, making music, and spending time with his baby twins.




Sign Painting talk and demonstration

Introduction to the sign painting trade, demonstration with the tools of the trade and participants hands-on.


When? Friday15.9 from 11:00 

Pierre Tardif 

 Pierre Tardif has been hand lettering for over 30 years. Since the opening of his sign shop in 1988, all of his work has always been hand painted, and still is today. The bulk of his work is the creation and production of vintage lettering and signage. In general his customers consist of businesses with historical interests, car collectors, custom car owners, museums and movie productions. His ability to precisely recreate the environment of times gone by, has gained him international recognition. His work has been featured in sign magazines, TV productions and in advertisements for 'One Shot Paint'. Pierre has found great inspiration from his huge vintage sign book collection and by rubbing elbows with some of the best veteran sign artists in the industry. As a very skilled artist who is driven by passion, he has spent years practicing and perfecting his art of traditional sign painting. His services now consist of consulting, designing and sign painting.