March 3rd, 2017
The Topography of Typography
- The words on the printed surface are taken in by seeing, not by hearing.
- One communicates meanings through the convention of words; meaning attains form through letters.
- Economy of expression: optics not phonetics.
- The design of the book-space, set according to the constraints of printing mechanics, must correspond to the tensions and pressures of content.
- The design of the book-space using process blocks which issue from the new optics. The supernatural reality of the perfected eye.
- The continuous sequence of pages: the bioscopic book.
- The new book demands the new writer. Inkpot and quill-pen are dead.
- The printed surface transcends space and time.
- The printed surface, the infinity of books, must be transcended. THE ELECTRO-LIBRARY.
— El Lissitzky, 1923
It never ceases to amaze me how dependent cultural movement is on the Forcefully Declared Techno-futurist Opinion. My inability to claim objective truth in overtly subjective realms (in this case, the realms of medium and execution) cements my temporality as a designer, I’m afraid. History doesn’t smile on the flexible.