Some quick observations to give you an idea of the atmosphere at Typo London

The conference kicked-off well with Erik Spiekermann doing a great job of keeping everyone informed and entertained with his forthright style. Commenting on the baldness and receding hairlines among the speakers and organisers he joked “Only bald designers are serious designers!”.

The conference, organised by Typo Berlin, has kept everything running to time and amazingly some speakers even finished early prompting many jokes about German efficiency (mostly by Erik again).

The highlight for me was Michael Bierut. He ran through 10 projects that focussed on signage and branding for places around the US. His talk was hilarious but insightful. On designing the logo for New World Symphony, he commented on an early version saying: “I thought the client would have one question for me: ’How can I thank you!?’. Instead the client asked ’Why does this [logo] make me feel nauseous?’”

  • Bierut also showed a screenshot of two forthcoming fonts by Hoefler & Frere-Jones called ’Nitro’ and ’Turbo’, designed for explosive, big-screen action titles, which looked interesting.
  • Another tongue-in-cheek tip from the Pentagram partner: When presenting to Architects the use of ’Cheltenham’ typeface, by architect Bertram Goodhue, always goes down a treat.
  • Architects would never say they we’re inspired by Graphic design even though Michael say must of his work is inspired by architecture.
  • Overall, not enough about Typography for my liking and some talks, unfortunately, felt like ‘filler’ before the Bierut’s key note.
  • Why is the wireless at every conference (with maybe the exception of SXSW) always awful?

Photos Thorsten Wulff & Gerhard Kassner