Square Circle Triangle by Bruno Munari
5 Comments on “Square Circle Triangle by Bruno Munari”
This is great, thanks. Since the original book was printed in Italy, I guess they used Cairoli by Nebiolo (and perhaps their Egizio), not Aurora, but which has its roots in the same source, Wagner & Schmidt in Leipzig. This sans serif pops up under various names from 1909 on. Likewise, Die neue Typografie was not set in Venus but also one of these Wagner faces as I found out in Barcelona the other year.
(Neue moderne Grotesk – as I usually call the design – is similar to Venus but foremost in the bold extended cut which appears to be identical or of the same roots.)
There are several new typefaces inspired by this design now – luckily, as there is still no good digital version of Aurora. The article linked to above mentiones Stephan Müller’s design I hope will see the light of Font Releases soon.
I found this while picking up my old research on Cairoli/Aurora. I have also read all your entries on Flickr, Indra. Thanks much for deepening the subject.
If you happen to see this, I wished to ask: do you have particular proof to attribute the first casting to Wagner & Schmidt? Their “Neue moderne Grotesk” samples you posted here on Flickr are not dated, if only tentatively. Thanks much!
P.S. Maurice, that is undoubtedly Cairoli, 100% sure as Munari surely printed where they used Nebiolo faces, and since they had their version it’s quite a safe bet to say that almost one in Italy used one of the German versions.
Technically, Wagner & Schmidt did no casting. They were a company that produced matrices to sell to other foundries. But to make it all more complicated, the Wagner family (Ludwig Wagner and two sons) was involved in several type foundries. Neue moderne Grotesk was the name at the Ludwig Wagner foundry of Leipzig and is dated to 1909 in the Seemann (light/regular style, I’m sure I mention that date on Flickr, too). Edel-Grotesk, for instance, was the name at the Johannes Wagner foundry (son of Ludwig) which later had a close collaboration with Weber, who cast the design as Aurora. The info in the post above is not totally correct as we do not know who designed the typeface. Likely not Johannes Wagner though.
I wrote a longer article about the typeface for the release of Forgotten Shapes’ version of it. It should be published in the near future.
Hi Indra, Don’t worry: thanks much. We can talk a bit via email, if you want.
Yes, I realize Wagner & Schmidt was not casting type, but they designed them in order to produce the matrices to sell to the foundries, right?
Anyway, I see you did a presentation about the complicated story of the company. Is there a transcription? I’d like to know where you gathered the 1909 date. Makes sense, as the earliest (dated) example of Neue Moderne/Aurora that I have, as Cairoli, is from 1910.
I have just followed you on Twitter; in case my email address is outdated (possible) I will give you my current one.
I also registered to “Fonts in Use”: I meant to do it for quite some time… :)