New Found Type Project. New Type from Old. An Estonian Perspective

Photo: Mana Kaasik

The Newfound Type project will explore relief type and print form making from an Estonian perspective, by identifying the techniques and characteristics specific to its historical context and applying these in an innovative way. The research will begin with the investigation into the physical collection of type and print forms at TYPA, as well as its library collection, which has been little researched from a contemporary perspective. The type collection at TYPA originates mostly from the printing houses Ühiselu (in Tallinn, before known as Reusner and Lindfors) and Hans Heidemann (in Tartu, before known as Mattiesen). These printing houses and the large-format printing tools used in them are the focus of this research. The aim is to find out, where, by whom and how these typefaces, used in these printing houses and now in TYPA, were designed and fabricated.

The knowledge emerged from historical research will be employed to create new physical large-format type, which will on the one hand help to preserve and develop the collections of TYPA, and on the other hand contribute to the development of new tools and techniques within the field of contemporary letterpress and graphic design. The creative research will determine the successful, tangible elements of the historic print studio and bring these into the 21st century by combining them with digital tools such as laser cutting, CNC, 3D printing, type design software etc. 

The tools created, the type designed and the historic elements uncovered, will be presented during a final exhibition at  TYPA at the end of 2024. Through this exhibition the project seeks to connect with a wide audience, not usually engaging with these features of print, whilst inspiring current designers, printmakers, and historians.

Project leader: Charlotte Biszewski

Project Team: Maria Muuk (EKA), Aimur Takk (EKA), Jörgen Loot (TYPA), Kristin Västra (TYPA), Marko Karilaid (TYPA)

Project Period: 01.06.2023 – 31.12.2023

Project is funded by: Estonian Cultural Ministry

Budget: 43 713 Euros


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Posted by Pille Epner