New Zealand Types
Last weekend I stumbled on Helvetiki, this witty marriage of the ubiquitous hei-tiki of New Zealand and Helvetica of the world by Matthew Moriarty at Crawlspace gallery. Created in 2007, the 50th anniversary of the type face Helvetica and the release year of the Helvetica film that looks at the larger conversation about the way type affects our lives, Helvetiki had me wondering what is New Zealand type?
I could point you to the magnificent type specimens from Kris Sowersby and Joseph Churchward, and note that New Zealand type often looks like it’s subtly growing, organic, alive, like koru unfolding. And I’m excited to learn more at the Printing Types: New Zealand Type Design since 1870 exhibition (at Objectspace in Auckland 25 July – 12 September 2009) curated by Jonty Valentine to “remedy the invisibility of type in New Zealand,” featuring work by Joseph Churchward, Robert Coupland Harding, Tom Elliott, Mark Geard, Maarten Ideema, Narrow Gauge, Warren Olds, Bruce Rotherham, Shabnam Shiwan, Kris Sowersby, Luke Wood, and Jack Yan.