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Typeface Review


Reviewed by Duncan Forbes on March 5, 2008

National is the second typeface released by KLIM within a year and has been termed a revival of the 19th century English and American grotesks.

While there is a hint of grotesk, it does not simply copy but is truly a reflection of the present — type made in and for the digital age (of course!).

National is slightly mannered, which becomes more apparent in the heavier weights yet it still remains simple, subtle and serious. A digitally carved Opentype wonder, it has everything the modern designer needs for modern typesetting. Rather than dwell on the amazing OpenType features, it’s the typeface as a whole that should really be given attention. It has a human charm that gives such warmth and learned beauty to text and after seeing paragraphs and pages set in it I’m sure the reader will agree too.

While National is only the second retail typeface from KLIM it has already been awarded a Certificate of Excellence from the TDC in Typeface Design 2008.

Duncan Forbes is a designer — and occasional type critic — at the studio Experimenta in Wellington, New Zealand.


  1. Arden says:

    Wow, that is absolutely beautiful. This face would make an awesome Lucida Grande replacement for OS X’s system font.

  2. Keith Kim says:

    Absolutely stunning. Especially considering how so many have failed to create a grotesk that is as novel as it is classic.

  3. NearlyNormal says:

    This font is very balanced and gorgeous. But Keith, I think Dagny is closer to being a nice replacement as it’s a lot more legible at smaller sizes.

  4. Required. says:

    Thanks for sharing. How much does the National font cost and where can you get it?

  5. Typographica says:

    Click the link in the article.

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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 with Caren Litherland and designed by Chris Hamamoto. Founded in 2002 by Joshua Lurie-Terrell. Relaunched in 2009 by Coles and Hamamoto.

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