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Gerry Leonidas will talk about the forthcoming Greek-English Intermediate Lexicon, a major new publication that he designed for Cambridge University Press, now in its final stages. The Lexicon sought to break with a typographic tradition for reference works going back to the nineteenth century, and take advantage of recent advances in typeface design. The hierarchy of information represented a particularly challenging typographic environment, which in turn offered a unique opportunity to design the Lexicon by taking full advantage of contemporary typeface families. Gerry will explore the typographic problems in the Lexicon, outline the questions raised by the project on the planning of type families, and comment on the differentiation of scripts for parallel use. The talk will underline the role of typeface design in high-end typography, and offer insights into the design of a document that will have a shelf life measured in decades.
Gerry Leonidas started working at exactly the time desktop computers began to disrupt the design and printing industry, while gathering qualifications of mostly peripheral relevance. In 1994 he found a home in the Department of Typography at the University of Reading, England, where he teaches typography and typeface design. Since 2001 he has been running the MA Typeface Design programme, a model for the transformation of typographic studies world-wide. Gerry has been contributing to Greek typeface design projects for over fifteen years, with foundries of all sizes: Adobe, Bitstream, Farnhill, H&F-J, Microsoft, Monotype, Rosetta, Tankard, Tiro, and may others. His perspective is one of placing typography in a wider context, and helping develop in designers an understanding of the basic principles, and an insight into the potential for originality. He is frequently invited to speak, teach, and review the work of others.