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The Lost Curves of the Typographic Goddess Athena

Are we living in the golden age of typography, or what? Whether for print or digital, we now have incredible control over how we can create with type. And as for the fonts themselves, the OpenType format continues to surprise with the creative possibilities it brings. When it comes to choice, the selection is now so wide, thanks to an apparently unstoppable flood of new offerings, that it's easy to get lost in the delightful task of finding the perfect font for a project. But beyond new font designs, there are of course more than a few reinterpretations of the classics. And even the occasional discovery of "lost" typefaces.

It's no surprise that one of the latest of these forgotten faces comes to us from P22, which has a long track record of digitizing obscure fonts. In this case the firm was able to work from the original drawings for Athena, designed for the Baltotype company in the 1950s. The drawings included a full upper and lower case set, numerals, basic punctuation and alternate forms of some letters. Miranda Roth digitized and expanded this for P22 to over 340 characters, including ligatures and a full Pan-European character set. The result is a rather curious font with a retro charm, best set large to show off its lack of straight lines in the stems and main strokes. The LTC Athena font will be on sale for $10.18 (regular $29.95) until February 15, 2013, and can be purchased on the P22 site.

Commenting on this Blog entry will be automatically closed on April 4, 2013.

Art D. Rector's picture
3165 pencils

I think we're living in the golden age of type options - but so far as typography? That went out the window with the typesetters imho. Couple months back I was taking out my recyclables and on top of the pile outside was a Rolling Stones issue from the late 70s. I picked it up to peruse it real quick and what struck me was how impeccable the typography was in every single ad. Even the smallest little ads were obviously done by professional typographers. That was the golden age imo - there were a lot of full page ads that were 70-80% type. The quality of the typesetting is basically what carried the ad. You don't see that very much anymore - now we see ads full of photoshop effects.

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