by Carlo Buffa

I had the idea of using as a model the italic type of a certain publishing house in Venice - that of Aldus Manutius.

Portrait of Aldus Manutius (1449-1515).

The book.
This was the source, the model. The italic typeface of Aldus, designed and cut by Francesco Griffo in imitation of handwriting, saw its first extensive use in Aldus’s edition of the Roman poet Virgil published in April 1501. This was the very first italic typeface, and although initially Aldus had a monopoly on it in Venetian territory it was immediately copied or used as a model for derivative fonts by printers elsewhere. According to some scholars, both the typeface and Aldus’s idea of using it to print a series of small “pocket books” in uniform format were inspired by manuscripts copied by the Paduan calligrapher Bartolomeo Sanvito (1435-1511).

The shape of language

Italian Design Forum
Moderated by Sergio Polano

The idea was that of a revived and updated “ars scribendi artificialiter”: the use of electronic technology for the design and digitalization of the letters in order to reconstitute the Ritratti font from this Aldine edition of 1556.

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