Type@Cooper - Hermann Zapf: 1918-2015. An overview of his life and work.

Hermann Zapf: 1918-2015. An overview of his life and work.


with Jerry Kelly




Tue., Jul. 19
6:00PM – 7:30PM
location: Koret Auditorium at the San Francisco Public Library Main Branch

Robert Bringhurst has written that Hermann Zapf was “The greatest type designer of our time, perhaps the greatest type designer of all time.” Zapf was also one of the most respected calligraphers and typographers of all time. He produced a huge body of work, a good deal of which has been reproduced in books and articles about Zapf, but much of which has rarely been seen. Similarly, a good amount has been written by and about Zapf, but much is still to be recorded. This illustrated talk will review some of the highlights of Zapf’s career, along with some little-knbown facts about the life and work of this exceptional artist, whose life spanned the entire gammut of type manufacturing methods.





Visit the Type@Cooper channel on Vimeo.



Lecturer: Jerry Kelly

Hermann Zapf: 1918-2015. An overview of his life and work.
Jerry Kelly is a book designer, calligrapher, type designer, and typographer based in New York City. After jobs in advertising typography and calligraphy, he worked for ten years at the Press of A. Colish (Mt Vernon, NY), and then for nine years for The Stinehour Press (Lunenburg, VT), before establishing his own firm in 1999. In those positions he has designed many award-winning books for clients too numerous to mention. He has been a partner at the Kelly-Winterton Press (a small letterpress operation) since 1978, and a free-lance designer and calligrapher for almost as long. In addition, he is a partner at Nonpareil Type, a small, independent typefoundry specializing in revivals of under-appreciated typefaces from the past (such as Emerson and Epigramatta) alongside with new, original designs (Rilke, Kelly Sans, etc.). He has taught calligraphy, typography, and book production & design at Parson’s School of Design (1997–2006), Stanford University (1998), Queens College, The Center for Book Arts, Camberwell College (London, England) and elsewhere.

Among his numerous publications are books including The Best of Both Worlds: Finely Printed Livres d’Artistes, 1910–2010 (Godine, 2011), The Art of the Book in the Twentieth Century (RIT, 2011), Fine Printing in the Twentieth Century
(Grolier Club, 2005), The Fine Art of Letters: The Work of Hermann Zapf (Grolier Club, 2000), A Century for the Century (Godine, 2004), Artist & Alphabet (AIGA, 1999), The Art of the Type Specimen (ITC, 1992), & German Fine Printing 1948–1988 (Grolier Club, 1988). He has also published numerous articles for the AIGA Journal, Fine Print, Printing History, Matrix, Calligraphy Review, Visible Language, Papers of the Bibliographical Society of America, and other periodicals.

Kelly holds a BA in Fine Arts from Queens College, CUNY, and has also studied at the Rochester Institute of Technology (Master Classes in Calligraphy with Hermann Zapf, 1979-1988) and Cooper Union (Digital Type Design, 2006).

• Nonpareil Typefoundry



Venue