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Adrian Frutiger has created an entire typeface universe. He is especially well-known for his highly readable faces for longer texts (Meridien, Univers, Glypha, Linotype Centennial, etc.), but has also produced many popular decorative alphabets, such as Ondine, Phoebus, and President, which he created in Paris in 1953.
More recently, he has applied his skills to the typefaces of the Linotype Project Type before Gutenberg. These include the light-footed and extravagant Herculanum, the narrow Pompeijana with its diamond-shaped serifs and the robust Rusticana, all derived from Roman origins.
Frutiger Capitalis Regular and Outline belong in this group as well; however, they are not based on direct historical sources. At first glance, they may seem related to the roman type Capitalis Monumentalis, but opon closer examination, the fonts reveal a vitality unknown to the characters the Romans etched in stone. Frutiger confesses that creating Capitalis was "a liberation." After working on so many sophisticated and meticulously designed typefaces, Capitalis was a breath of fresh air.
Stylistically, Frutiger Capitalis Outline forms a bridge to Frutiger Capitalis Signs -- a whole universe of its own. Frutiger Capitalis Signs is a personal cosmos of symbols, many are immediately "legible", others leave room for interpretation. Some of the symbols are the product of Frutiger"s imagination, such as his "Life Signs" -- soft, hand drawn figures whose lines have no apparent beginning or end, creating both interior and exterior spaces, new forms emerging at each glance. These contoured drawings have accompanied Frutiger throughout his professional life -- a fantasy garden which has provided an important balance to his many years of disciplined typeface design. Yet he does not consider himself an artist. Frutiger says he simply "wants to tell stories, to draw thin lines, create contours of signs: that is my style."
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