London-based studio MuirMcNeil have recently released four new digital typefaces and, to celebrate, four beautifully screen-printed specimen posters. The studio was set up in 2010 by Hamish Muir and Paul McNeil as a vehicle to explore parametric design systems – an algorithmic mode of design – within typography. The four faces draw on a variety of inspirations, many with historical foundations.
Panopticon is an homage to Jeremy Bentham, inspired by his surveillance system of the same name, Intersect draws on the gridded rigidity of bitmap imagery and Interact takes Wim Crouwel’s 1968 font vormgevers as a starting point, expanding it into a system of 23 new typefaces. The explanation for Nine is too complicated for me to even begin to explain.
Despite their intimidatingly mathematical approach to design, the results of MuirMcNeil’s collaborative efforts are visually impressive, evoking a bygone era of typographic rigour when graphic design was as much about the theoretical foundations of your approach as the aesthetic quality of the output.
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