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Visual Thinking

How I see words in my head

Last summer in Vancouver I attended a screening of the cult documentary Helvetica — a biography of the classic sans serif font designed in 1957. All 950 seats of the Ridge Theatre were filled, and I haven’t felt as much energy in an audience since attending the 1993 taping of MTV Unplugged in Sony Studios in New York. Had it been possible to buy pennants and banners in the lobby, the air would have been filled with such graphic bursts as Italics! Or MEDIUM! or Light!, and I’d have been holding one, too. Mine would have read: Helvetica Neue (T1) 75 Bold.The font is a rock star.

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