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Commentary

P22 Brings Cassandre’s Two-tone Caps to Life

Typographica on October 1, 2004

A. M. Cassandre is best known for his posters, but he’s also the designer of several typefaces including Peignot, the eccentric that’s seen rabid abuse in the last quarter-century due to its broad availability as a digital font. Cassandre’s first face was Bifur, designed in two parts — two colors for each glyph. Elsner & Flake once digitized Bifur as Cassandre Initials (now unavailable), but as a single font it didn’t capture the two-tone spirit of the original.

Today, the International House of Fonts (IHOF) fills that void with the release of their own P22 Bifur. Rich Kegler’s creation includes six fonts with layerable sets of wide lines, fine lines, and solid overlays. He took it a step further and added a lowercase that complements Cassandre’s initials surprisingly well.


IHOF (supposedly the daughter of P22, but I’m having trouble distinguishing the two labels lately) also announced another multilayered revival: Durer Caps, again an alphabet that was previously only available via less serious renditions (Duerer Latin, Codex, Hands On Albrecht).

See also: Anisette : Applied Geometry of Albrecht Dürer : De Symmetria

10 Comments

  1. Hrant says:

    Finally! Great going, Richard.

    One thing I don’t get is why the lc is featured so timidly. It’s a big deal, to me at least.

    hhp

  2. Roballoo says:

    I loved pages 2-4 of the PDF specimen. :)Thanks guys I needed a laugh today.

  3. I love the Bifur numbers. Now, would those be original?

    (As for humour, I’m partial to the last page of the PDF.)

  4. geraint says:

    nice. must remember, ‘bifur is not a screen font’.

    love the two-tone thing, and the lc is great, very sympathethic.

  5. Scott McMillin says:

    Ha! This is fantastic, I was just looking for Bifur a week or two ago. Thanks for the news.

  6. Thanks!

    Bifur numbers. Now, would those be original?
    The UC, figures and some punctuation are all from Cassandre’s original.

    The phrase “THIS IS NOT THE WAY TO USE BIFUR” is borrowed from the original Bifur specimen booklet.

    The lc was a challenge and I understand why Cassandre didn’t create one. If you want to have a look at the full character set, you can try it out (a little bit at a time) on the TypeCaster™. We may re-work the PDF specimen to show the lc to better effect.

  7. Dan Reynolds says:

    Wow! Dürer caps was designed by a designer from Liechtenstein… how cool is that?

  8. Miss Tiffany says:

    Really nice! Those lowercase are very nicely done. Richard is this available in OpenType? Will it be?

  9. Miss Tiffany says:

    Opentype doesn’t matter. It is really cool. Anything that reminds me of this time period has my vote when revitalized in such a way.

  10. OpenType…not too soon. We will be releasing our first OpenType fonts soon, but not for Bifur…unless the masses cry out for such a thing.

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Typographica is a review of typefaces and type books, with occasional commentary on fonts and typographic design. Edited by Stephen Coles and designed by Chris Hamamoto. Founded in 2002 by Joshua Lurie-Terrell. Relaunched in 2009 by Coles and Hamamoto.

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