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Adrian Frutiger

After Hans Ed. Meier (July 2014) and Hermann Zapf in July 2015 we say goodbye to the most influential type designer from the 20th/early 21st cent. Within seconds the sad news got around the world.

On 18 September, the day after Frutiger’s funeral, Erich Alb sent this:

Adrian Frutiger passed away in the nursing home at Bremgarten/Berne (Switzerland) in the night of 10 September 2015, age 87 and 3 month. He was in poor health for some years.

Only one year after Hans Ed. Meier (the second important type artist in Switzerland), we’re losing with Adrian Frutiger a humble person, a genius.

Adrian wished no condolence cards and no announcements in the newspaper, and also a burial with only some family members. They have (incl. myself) stuck to that.

Three days later, on Saturday afternoon, a diligent person wrote to SDA Swiss News Berne, that Adrian Frutiger has passed away that day (which was the wrong date). Followed by Boulevard online paper Blick, Facebook and Twitter the news went around the planet within seconds, against the wishes of Frutiger’s family.

On Thursday 17 September the ceremony was held in the cemetary of Bremgarten/Berne.

Today Friday I can send this announcement to all our members and friends of Adrian on every corner of the world, where his Alphabets are in use, partly since 60 years. They will be in use for longer than that period …

Adrian was my hero for 50 years. We worked together, we have been laughing and in tiers, we’ve had a marvellous time together. I have learned a great amount of him and passing over this know how as long as I can.

I will never forget Adrian, neither his wife Simone. Requiescat in pace!

Frank E. Blokland
Frank E. Blokland says:
Sep 23, 2015 07:17 AM

On 10 September 2015 Adrian Frutiger, one of the absolute giants of the type-design profession, passed away. I attended a couple of Frutiger’s talks in the course of time, starting around 1984/85 when he gave a presentation on his type designs in Amsterdam. I only talked with him once, in Basel at the ATypI conference in 1986. I showed him some of my first –analog– type designs (this was eight years after my first lesson from Gerrit Noordzij). I recall that despite the fact that he considered my work authentic, he was annoyed because I called myself a type designer. In his opinion one was a type designer after a *long* period of practicing and refining one’s hand, and acquiring knowledge and experience.

Adrian Frutiger was right, of course, and his remark made me realize that type and its designer has to mature. Although I was technically capable of releasing my type designs digitally towards the end of the 1980s I took my time until 1993, when I released DTL Documenta.

Frank E. Blokland

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