Mayakovsky: ROSTA windows

ROSTA windows were Agitprop posters created by artists and poets like Cheremnykh, Mayakovsky, Moor, Nuremberg, and Volpin for the Russian Telegraph Agency (ROSTA). They were usually displayed in windows and often painted with cardboard stencils rather than printed.

This is a selection of Vladimir Vladimirovich Mayakovsky’s posters designed for ROSTA from the book:
Duwakin, W. (1967). Rostafenster. Majakowski als Dichter und bildender Künstler. Dresden: VEB Verlag der Kunst

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Just Getting Started

What a day! We marched throughout the world and the outpouring of homemade messages of solidarity, resistance, love, and strength has been overwhelming. Here are a few of our efforts and some amazing signs we witnessed.

Some signs by Bettes:














Dirty Bandits

Indra (after ECS)



ECS and Naomi

Our Washington DC correspondents ECS and Naomi found some amazing signs at the big march:
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October – December 2016 News

It’s [finally!] time to say goodbye to 2016 and we thought we’d end the year with a long overdue round up of Alphabettes-related news.


The Fitchburg Alphabet project by Anna Schuleit Haber for Fitchburg, MA’s Sentinel & Enterprise newspaper wins Publick Occurrences Award for outstanding journalism. Contributors to the series included Shoko Mogikura, Nina Stössinger, Laura Meseguer, Therese Schuleit, Francesca Bolognini, Anna Schuleit Haber, Indra Kupferschmid, Geri McCormick, Catherine Griffiths, and Nicole Dotin

Barbara Bigosinska releases Mala

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Conferences 2016

Alphabettes will end 2016 by celebrating the people who organised inclusive type, typography and design conferences this year. Your commitment and dedication to gender equality means a lot and the success of your events gives us hope that you will be serving as an example for many other conference organisers.

Here’s to you!

In order of percentage of female speakers:

57.89% Sans Everything, FR – Amiens
52.08% ICTVC, GR – Thessaloniki
50.00% Typographics, US – New York City

47.37% AIGA Design Conference, US – Las Vegas
46.67% BTS Away Days, DE – Berlin
42.55% TypeCon, US – Seattle
40.00% Encontro de Tipografia Conference, PT – Lisbon
38.46% Beyond Tellerrand, DE – Düsseldorf
37.50% Rencontres Internationales de Lure, FR – Lurs
37.50% Typofest, BG – Plovdiv
36.27% ATypI, PL – Warsaw
34.78% 7CIT, ES – Valencia
34.29% TYPO, DE – Berlin
33.33% BITS, TH – Bangkok
33.33% DiaTipo, BR – Porto Alegre
30.00% Dynamic Font Day, DE – Munich
25.00% Typo Day Köln, DE – Cologne
23.08% Granshan, EG – Cairo
22.22% DiaTipo, BR – São Paulo
22.22% DiaTipo, BR – Caruaru
20.00% Typo Day Hamburg, DE – Hamburg
15.00% Automatic Type Design, FR – Nancy
14.29% Typo Day Basel, CH – Basel
12.50% Kerning, IT – Faenza
12.50% DiaTipo, BR – Campinas
11.11% Walbaum Wochenende, DE – Weimar
10.00% TYPO Labs, DE – Berlin
5.00% Serebro Nabora, RU – Moscow


[This list is not exhaustive but a crop from the conferences we attended. If you know of one that’s missing, feel free to add it in the comments. For the %%%, we counted the persons listed on the speaker pages of the respective conferences. Award badge kindly designed by Ulrike Rausch.]

Connecting The Dots

Almost to the day five years ago Bruno Maag asked me in a job interview about my five year plan. Just out of university with just a few freelance type design assignments on the horizon I told him truthfully that I didn’t have a plan for the following five minutes, let alone months or years.

This seems like a good occasion to catch up with some people who graduated and started their careers in type design at the same time. Elena, Kimya, Marina, Sol and I will talk about our past five years, about our careers, where we come from, where we are now, what we wish someone had told us five years ago and when the things we learned started to fall into place. Continue reading

Alphabettes News – September 2016

Rounding up the busy summer months with two news posts in a row, here’s what happened in September:


New releases

After being in the works for a while, Laura Meseguer released Multi, a sans-serif family with text and display styles in seven weights for the display and three for text, all with their italics, exclusively available through her, and soon through Type-Ø-Tones’ brand new website. Check out the extensive minisite.

Also long awaited, Nina Stössinger finally released Nordvest, her slab serif with horizontal stress she talked about at Typographics in June. Available at Monokrom.

Portada is the latest typeface by Veronika Burian and TypeTogether, a sturdy serif and “a comprehensive type family for screens” (including a free icon set).

Two Alphabettes released sticker packs for the new iMessages in iOS 10:
by Ulrike Rausch is a set with 50 lovely ways to say “no”. We could all use some of that sometimes. Happy Hauntings by Shauna Lynn Panczyszyn has Halloween-themed illustrations and lettering.


Ulrike is on a roll, she also gave a talk about OpenType-features at TYPODay in Cologne.

It was a great month for talks as anyone who has been to the ATypI conference in Warsaw knows. There were lots of women speaking, giving workshops, moderating (among others Verena Gerlach, Joyce Ketterer, Aoife Mooney, Ann Bessemans, Indra Kupferschmid, Alice Savoie, Dorine Sauzet, Catherine Dixon, Laura Meseguer, Petra Cerne Oven, Veronika Burian, Sonja Knecht, Bianca Berning, Martina Flor, Briar Levit, Gloria Kondrup, Viktoriya Grabowska, Carima El Behairy, Sofie Beier, Mariko Takagi, Rathna Ramanathan, Aleksandra Samulenkova, Sue Walker) and organising (including Marina Chaccur and Tamye Riggs) and our favourite interviewer Liron Lavi Turkenich conducted video interviews onsite. You can read our ATypI review here.

More news from ATypI

Also in Warsaw, the update to the OpenType specification was announced, it now allows for OpenType variable fonts. Bianca Berning was part of the working group that made it happen.

ATypI saw the release of the new 365Typo book, edited by Linda Kudrnovská. There are 78 contributors, 27 of them women, including Bianca Berning, Ann Bessemans, Veronika Burian, Petra Cerne Oven, Marina Chaccur, Catherine Dixon, Shelley Gruendler, Julia Kahl, Sonja Knecht, Indra Kupferschmid, Krista Radoeva, Ksenya Samarskaya, Nina Stössinger and Liron Lavi Turkenich. Many others are mentioned or have their work featured in the book, like Alice Savoie, Erin McLaughlin, Heidi Rand Sørensen, Andrea Tinnes, María Ramos, Jessica Hische and Luisa Baeta. The book also includes articles about Alphabettes and one about our mentorship program.

Spread from 365Typo. Photo by Marina Chaccur

Spread from 365Typo. Photo by Marina Chaccur

New jobs and awards

Tânia Raposo is the new Type@Cooper West Program Coordinator.

Millie HMK, a script typeface Lila Symons designed for Hallmark Cards, was recognized at AIGA Kansas City’s Twelfth Annual Design Awards for Outstanding Achievement in Typeface Design.

Print Mag’s Best New Typefaces of 2016 (so far) includes Bely, Nordvest, William Text, Kopius, Equitan Sans and Slab.

And finally … turned one year old on Sept 10. We celebrated with a design refresh thanks to Nicole Dotin and Amy Papaelias — new fonts, new features (like search, featured posts, and a footer). And we celebrated with cake of course!

Alphabettes News – August 2016

With the Northern hemisphere slithering into winter temperatures, let’s recap a bit more of our summer in type:

Fiona Ross interviewed by Eye on Design
British type historian and designer, Fiona Ross was interviewed by Eye on Design about her experience in designing typefaces for non-Latin scripts such as Arabic, Hindi, Devanagari, Malayalam, Sinhala, and Thai.

Alphabettes at WMCFest
Jillian Adel and Isabel Urbina Peña both presented at the WMCFest held in Cleveland between August 5–7.

Bianca Berning interviewed by Type Thursday
Type Thursday interviewed Bianca Berning where they discussed her work as head of the Skills and Process department at Dalton Maag, and her involvement with the Alphabettes Mentoring Programme.

Nina Stössinger joins Frere-Jones Type
After closing her studio, Typologic, Nina Stössinger has joined Frere-Jones Type as Senior Designer.

Gender parity at TypeCon Seattle and many of us on stage
At this year’s edition of TypeCon there was gender parity in their line-up of speakers. Speakers and workshop facilitators included Ann Bessemans, Nadine Chahine, Petra Dočekalová, Sibylle Hagmann, Joyce Ketterer, Briar Levit, Aoife Mooney, Mary Catherine Pflug, Nina Stössinger and Laura Worthington.


Center girl group from left to right: Theresa dela Cruz (behind her Ariadne Remoundakis), Roxane Gataud, Nina Stössinger, Tania Râposo, (behind Nina’s whiskey Petra Dočekalová), Bianca Berning, and Victoria Rushton

Roxane Gataud is winner of the 2016 SOTA Catalyst Award
Roxane Gataud was named winner of the 2016 SOTA Catalyst Award. She presented her work at TypeCon, where she was also presented with a certificate designed by Laura Worthington.

protoType exhibition at TypeCon Seattle
The works of Liron Lavi Turkenich and other women designers were selected to be exhibited as part of protoType, a competition and exhibition of the most innovative ideas in type design, held at TypeCon in Seattle.

Kontour joins Type Network
Sibylle Hagman’s Kontour becomes the latest foundry to partner with Type Network.

Isabel Urbina Peña interviewed by Girl Boss
Girl Boss interviewed Isabel Urbina Peña last month where they talked about she got into book design, and her work on Yes, Equal.

And we published our “Greetings from …” vacation series, if you want to let our dream destinations roll past you again.

Happy 1st Birthday, Alphabettes


This week, turned one. Blogs, they grow up so fast! We’re celebrating with cake.

We wanted a place on the internet to publish our own thoughts and writing, so we did what any self-respecting, overcommitted people do: we started a new side project. Within two weeks of registering the domain name, the site was live. Scrappy and minimal, the original design worked (through many late night, trans-Atlantic sessions of reckless-intermediate theme editing), but we quickly began feeling some growing pains. One year later, the site boasts around 145 posts (and 25 headers), most of which feature previously unpublished content.

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