Monotype Foundation

 "The time is right to develop a vehicle to support the typographic community," said Robert M. Givens, president and chief executive officer of Monotype Imaging Inc. "We formed the Monotype Foundation to fund a variety of typographic initiatives, such as educational scholarships and research programs. The foundation is also a labor of love, one that involves connecting in a meaningful way with those who care most about type - graphic communicators, students, designers and type enthusiasts."

The initial plan for raising funds is to create opportunities for the public to own pieces of typographic history, according to Allan Haley, director of words and letters at Monotype Imaging. "We'll be reproducing original type drawings from well-known designers as limited edition, collectible works of art. We'll also be including signed companion pieces, created by some of today's world-class designers and educators, to complement each historic piece."


Eric Gill's original drawing of the Gill Sans® Bold Extra Condensed typeface has been selected as the first limited edition print. Gill designed the typeface in 1937 for The Monotype Corporation Ltd. near London. The reproduction features the alphabet in both uppercase and lowercase letters along with numerals and punctuation marks. Gill's corrections and pencil titling and initials are also visible, just as in the original drawing, which is stored in Monotype Imaging's archives at the company's U.K. office near London.

The giclée digital fine art printing process was used to produce each piece on archival quality matte paper. "The giclée technique is amazing - the reproduction looks just like the original," Haley said.

The 500 hand-numbered reproductions will be offered unframed and will fit standard 18 x 24-inch frames. Each limited edition print will be accompanied by a commentary by Michael Harvey, the British type designer, educator and author who began his career as a letter carver more than 50 years ago after reading Gill's autobiography. In 2001, Harvey was honored by Queen Elizabeth II when he became a Member of the Order of the British Empire for his contributions in art. Each reproduction will also include an article about Gill by Sebastian Carter, the British designer, fine printer and writer on typography. The Gill article first appeared in a 1990 edition of the "Monotype Recorder," a journal published by Monotype through much of the twentieth century.

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