Film still from Helvetica. 2007. USA. Directed by Gary Hustwit. Image courtesy of Gary Hustwit

2007 marks the fiftieth anniversary of Max Miedinger and Edouard Hoffmann’s design Helvetica, the most ubiquitous of all typefaces. Widely considered the official typeface of the twentieth century, Helvetica communicates with simple, well-proportioned letterforms that convey an aesthetic clarity that is at once universal, neutral, and undeniably modern. In honor of the first typeface acquired for MoMA’s collection, the installation presents posters, signage, and other graphic material demonstrating the variety of uses and enduring beauty of this design classic. As a special feature in the exhibition, an excerpt of Gary Hustwit’s documentary Helvetica reveals the typeface as we experience it in an everyday context.

Organized by Christian Larsen, Curatorial Assistant, Department of Architecture and Design.

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