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1983 ATypI Working Seminar papers

Identifier: CSC-0030

Scope and Contents

The 1983 ATypI Working Seminar papers contain three series: The 1983 ATypI Working Seminar Papers, Visible Language, Winter 1985- Production Files, and Miscellaneous ATypI Organizational Files. 1983 ATypI Working Seminar papers series encompasses the main focus of the collection. It focuses on the workshops and talks that were given athe 1984 seminar, some of which were included in the Winter 1985 edition of Visiable Language.

Visible Language, Winter 1985- Production Files includes production plans from 1983-1985 when Visible Language was being put together. It featured many of the speakers at the 1984 ATypI seminar. The series includes abstracts in a variety of languages, mockups, mechnicals, as well as typesetting and design papers.

Series III: Miscellaneous ATypI Organizational Files includes files that Charles Bigelow and Kris Holmes collected during their involvement in ATypI. It includes brochures, meeting minutes, negatives, and correspondence.


  • Creation: 1976 - 1985
  • Creation: Majority of material found within 1983 - 1985

Conditions Governing Access

This collection is open to researchers.

Biographical / Historical

Association Typographique Internationale (ATypI) is a global forum and focal point for the type community and business. Members include type designers, type publishers, and typographic designers. ATypI is a non-profit organization founded in 1957 by Charles Peignot. They have members in over 40 nations. They preserve the culture, tradition, and history of type and typography. They also run conferences, publish journals, newsletters, and other publications, among other services.

Visible Language is concerned with research and ideas that help define the unique role and properties of written language. A premise of the journal is that reading and writing form an autonomous system of language expression, which must be defined and developed in its own terms. This, along with research and ideas, help define the presentation of information within the digital arena. Visible Language began in 1967 and continued until 2002, totaling 36 volumes. Aside from the publication about the August 1983 ATypI conference, past articles include An Annotated Design Research Bibliography (Volume 36), New Media Poetry: Poetic Innovation and New Technologies (Volume 30), and Visual Cues in Word Recognition and Reading, Part 1 & 2 (Volume 15). The journal is currently edited by Sharon Poggenpohl of the Illinois Institute of Technology

The Fifth ATypI Working Seminar- The Computer and the Hand in Type Design: The Aesthetics and Technology of Digital Letterforms was held during the week of July 31 and August 7,1983 at Stanford University. This event was an International Working Seminar on electronic and tradition methods of letter design sponsored by the Committee for Educations and Research in Letterform of ATypI. The event was organized by Charles Bigelow, who was the Melbert B. Cary, Jr. Professor of Graphic Arts in the School of Print Media at the Rochester Institute of Technology. The program included workshops, seminars, and illustrated lectures. John Dreyfus presented the keynote address, as Honorary President of ATypI. Other speakers included type designers Matthew Carter, Bram deDoes, Andre Guertler, Christian Mengelt, Gerard Unger, and Hermann Zapf; typographers Charles Bigelow and Jack Stauffacher; lettering artists John Benson and David Kindersley; type punch-cutter Henk Drost; designer Veronika Elsner; and computer scientists Patrick Baudelaire, Donald Knuth and Neil Wiseman.

The workshop was meant to acquaint educators and designers with new computerized methods of type production, as well as review traditional lettering crafts, such as punch-cutting and stone-cutting, to provide practical experience with computer-aided design systems, and bring designers and engineers together for future cooperation and creation in type design.Demonstrations of the IKARUS, METAFONT, ALTO, CAMEX and other systems were available for use during the seminar. Though the seminar was given in English, interpreters were available in German and French to achieve a truly global initiative.


13.34 Linear Feet (7 manuscript boxes, 2 oversize boxes)




This collection includes ATypI Working Seminar papers, lecture transcriptions, Visible Language production files, and miscellaneous ATypI organization files. The production files include paste up photographs, original negatives and slides, article mock-ups, correspondence between Charles Bigelow and the lecturers, and mock ups of the actual journal. There are multiple draft copies of each article, as well as the journal. There is also information about other conferences attended by Charles Bigelow, the donator of the collection.


This collection is arranged into three series: Series I: ATypl Working Seminar papers, Series II: Visible Language Winter 1985 - Production Files and Series III: Miscellaneous ATypl Organizational Files.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

This collection was donated by Charles Bigelow.

Separated Materials

"ATypI: About Us." ATypi - Association Typographique Internationale. Association Typographique Internationale, n.d. Web. 06 Jan 2011. />.

ATypI Fifth Working Seminar information - "Announcement: Fifth ATypI Working Seminar, The computer and the hand in type design: The aesthetics and technology of digital letterforms." TUGboat.4.1 (1983): 33. Print.

Visible Language source: "Visible Language Information." Visible Language Directory. Rhode Island School of Design, n.d. Web. 6 Jan 2011. / PublisherPage.html>.

Processing Information

Collection processed by Jen Stack, January 2011.

Finding aid encoded by Megan Moltrup, January 2014.

Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Code for undetermined script
Language of description note

Repository Details

Part of the Cary Graphic Arts Collection Repository

Rochester NY 14623 US
(585) 475-2408