Submissions Open For Letter.2 International Type Design Competition

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News | Yves Peters | April 11, 2011

On Monday, April 4, submissions opened for Letter.2 – the second international competition of type design organised by the Association Typographique Internationale (ATypI). The first event of this kind since the founding of ATypI in 1957 took place in 2001, and it was a contribution to the United Nations Year of Dialogue Among Civilizations. The winning entries were exhibited at the United Nations Headquarters in New York (USA) and they were featured in the 384-page book Language Culture Type. Letter.2 aims to provide a wide-angled snapshot of the state of typeface design around the globe ten years after the 2001 competition, and to promote typographic excellence and best professional practices. It also intends to raise awareness about the role of typography at encouraging and maintaining cultural diversity.

The letter.2 jury is integrated by renowned experts in the field, both type designers and typographers. They will be assisted by an external advisory board that will help in judging typefaces for non-Latin alphabets from around the globe. Type designers from many regions and nations, of various ethnic, linguistic, and cultural backgrounds are expected to contribute to the competition. All typefaces published (commercially or non-commercially) between October 2001 and August 2011 are allowed to enter the competition. The jury will meet in Buenos Aires in October 2011 and will make a selection of winning entries based on their design excellence. The winning designs will be exhibited at the 2012 ATypI conference. A one-day conference will be held in Buenos Aires at the time of the judging, where there will be lectures by the jurors, whom will share their views about the past, present and future of typography, along with a round-table discussion about the results from and their conclusions about the competition. If enough funds are raised the lectures and discussions will be recorded and made available on the ATypI site.

April 4, 2011   Submissions opens
June 20, 2011   Early bird pricing ends
August 15, 2011   Submissions close
October 1 & 2, 2011   Judging
October 4, 2011   Buenos Aires Conference
October 17, 2011   Results announcement


ATypI – Association Typographique Internationale

ATypI, the Association Typographique Internationale, the principal global typographic organization, is a non-profit organisation that provides a forum for the discussion of the creative and business aspects of type design and use. It was founded in 1957 by the French type designer Charles Peignot.

What ATypI does

  • Promotes the creation of new type designs for every script and language in the world
  • Organizes, and supports others in organizing, our annual conference, exhibitions, lectures, meetings, and other events on the internet and throughout the world
  • Makes, and supports others in making, publications, films, and videos about type and typography
  • Promotes and encourages international dialogue on education
  • Provides a focus and a meeting place for type professionals, encouraging cooperation and fair competition
  • Encourages ethical business practice, respect for intellectual property, and good relations among all involved in making or using type
  • Works for the legal protection of type, typography, and graphic design, and opposes unauthorised copying of type, using every appropriate means
  • Communicates and co-operates with organizations and associations around the world that pursue similar goals
  • Supports members in protecting their typographical interests


bukva:raz! was a special contribution of ATypI to the United Nations Year of Dialogue Among Civilizations (2001). The competition was officially announced at the general meeting of ATypI in Leipzig, on 24 September 2000. The competition was organised on behalf of ATypI by the Type Designers Association, a professional society based in Moscow, which unites the best type design professionals of Russia. The international panel of bukva:raz! consisted of well-known typographic experts: Matthew Carter, Henrik Mnatsakanyan, Yuri Gherchuk, Fiona Ross, Akira Kobayashi, Vladimir Yefimov, Lyubov’ Kuznetsova, Maxim Zhukov.

The judging of bukva:raz! took place in Moscow, Russia, on 1 and 2 December 2001. Entries were selected for their design excellence and displayed in the catalogue of the winning designs – Language Culture Type – along with an exhibition of the winners at the 2002 annual conference of ATypI in Rome. In 2002, ATypI produced a major book on international type design: Language Culture Type: International Type Design in the Age of Unicode, edited by John D. Berry, designed by Maxim Zhukov, and published by Graphis. Language Culture Type was a landmark publication in the long history of type and printing. No other book had taken such a consciously global approach to the way written communication is reproduced around the world.

At the heart of the book are the one hundred winning type designs from ATypI’s first-ever international type competition, bukva:raz! The winning typefaces are presented clearly and spaciously, along with information about each face, its language/script, and its designer. The book not only shows the winners but puts them in context, with a series of essays on various alphabets and writing systems, and the constraints and opportunities involved in designing type for them.

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1 Comment:

  1. If U switch the 7 and 5 around I will be more relaxed.

    Posted by K. on Apr. 12, 2011

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