Andrea Schmidt & Patrick Marc Sommer: typoversity2

With the launch of the second volume of typoversity, Andrea and Patrick take the opportunity to open a panel discussion and question Verena Gerlach, Prof. Andrea Tinnes, Jay Reynolds and Christoph Dunst about the future of typography at German universities.

Foto © Alex Blumhoff

Typoversity is the union of the terms typography and university. It is a plat form that provides the basis for output as well as input, it opens the discussion about typography and all it different tendencies. In typoversity2 Andrea and Marc started a call for entries where students were ask to send their typographic work. All in all they received 450 projects that the jury had to reduce to 45 showcases presented in the book.

It was extremely important for the publishers that this book is not a ‘lookbook’. Instead it is content driven and only shows student projects which where the use of typography reflects this.

In the panel discussion it seems that the main enemy of high typographic level in Design is ‘hipster typography’, the phenomena of cool looking typography that doesn’t reflect the content in any way but gets popular only through its fashionable appearance. In the end all designers use the same tools but it is a very important task to teach the students a deeper knowledge of how to use them and to use them responsible.

Patrick Marc Sommer

Patrick Marc Sommer

Graphic Designer, Co-publisher, Editor (Berlin)

Patrick Marc Sommer is co-publisher and editor of the magazine Design made in Germany. He works freelance in Berlin, specialising in publication design and production, with a focus on typography. His projects have included books, magazines, and annual reports, among others. Sommer was a member of the jury for the European Design Award from 2013 to 2018, as well as for the Stiftung Buchkunst competitions “Förderpreis für junge Buchgestaltung 2016” and “Die Schönsten deutschen Bücher 2017”.

Andrea Schmidt

Andrea Schmidt is a typographer and designer based in Berlin. A lecturer for Typography at FH Potsdam, UdK Berlin and CAA Hangzhou (China), she has carried out research in the field of “Multilingual Typography”, for example at the design2context Institute at HDK Zürich (2008-2010), and in the field of “Intercultural Design”. Since 2010, Andrea Schmidt has been a co-editor for Verlagshaus J. Frank | Berlin with its programme dedicated to intercultural literature and illustration projects.

Andrea Tinnes quotes Paul Rand, which in a way also summarises the discussion today: “Design is the method of putting form and content together. Design, just as art, has multiple definitions, there is no single definition. Design can be art. Design can be aesthetics. Design is so simple, that’s why it is so complicated.

Today’s panel discussion was driven clearly from the point of view of the teacher in typography, I hope the students in the audience still feel motivated and inspired to take on the challenge.

Sandra / GraphicBirdWatching