Daily Archives: 03/09/2021

The Art of Lettering

The book, published by Formist Editions and featuring the work of type designer and Klim Type Foundry founder Kris Sowersby, asks, “When is a letter not a letter?”

Running to a hefty 800 pages, and filled with double-page spreads of giant letterforms, The Art of Letters aims to question and explore the relationship between art, function and form when it comes to type design.

In the foreword, designer and Formist director Mark Gowing says the idea for the book came from discussion around what turns an “abstract form” into part of a wider language system, as well as “the relative absurdity of these timeless and ubiquitous forms”.

The Art of Letters treats each of the glyphs drawn by Kris Sowersby – a largely self-taught type designer who set up Klim Type Foundry in 2005 – as a standalone piece of work, big enough to fill a single page.

As well as a chance to appreciate the carefully designed shapes of individual letterforms, the book itself is quite the work of art with black edged pages and a gold foil-stamped dust jacket. The introduction is, naturally, set in a custom typeface as well – Brotunda, designed by Sowersby and Gowing together, and inspired by the medieval rotunda script.

Art of Letters is published by Formist Editions, priced $90; formisteditions.co