designers books

Published by Sébastien Hayez

  • The leporello totally spread.

  • The 35 pages leporello booklet.
  • The first pages.

  • The first double spread page.

  • A 6 pages leaflet is apart and explain the purpose of the Mourier typeface.

  • Cover illustration by Rigge Gorm Holten.

The myth about
Bird B (K. Holten & E. Mourier, 1970)

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Written by Sébastien Hayez, 4 years ago, 1 Comment

The myth about Birb B
Knud Holten (text)
Eric Mourier (type design and layout)

10 x 21 cm – 350 cm long when spread.
Published by the Graphic College of Denmark
Limited edition of 2500 copies
Signed copy by Eric Mourier

Cover illustration by Rigge Gorm Holten
Cover printed by Hoffensets in full color
paper: Micha-offset
Printed in offset (2 inks) by the High School of Book-craft, Copenhagen, Danmark

My story with Eric Mourier is quite surprising. I recently bough New Alphabet A to Z by Herbert Spencer & Colin Forbes (1974). I’ve found a lot of interesting stuff, some quite usual for this period, others with a stronger approach. I can list Crouwel, Carnase or Sandberg. One reminds my attention a couple of times. A strange geometric alphabet set in a grid of 7 x 7 scares and strong rules of constructions, like a game.

I try to get in touch with the designer Eric Mourier, a french name that give me no result. I start to redesign the alphabet in Illustrator and show some pictures to my friend Frank Adebiaye in order to know if he could be interested in distributing this font via Velvetyne, his digital foundry. Frank gave me a link, a danish publisher who have worked with Eric Mourier. I wrote to him and ask Mourier’s e-mail. Nothing.

An e-mail arrive some days later, Eric Mourier was surprised & happy. He gave me his approval for a free digital font distributed by Velvetyne. And ask my address to send this leporello. This document is a poem written by danish writter Knud Holten, the goal was to make “a graphic mediumc itself the third element of an inseparable, synaesthetic continuity”.

Nobody can say that this booklet is 42 years old, and that’s what is fascinating with this font & design: when all the font of the 1970 were only “fun” this one reminds absolutly timeless even if nearly unreadable. It works like a programm, a tool for designer that can be used in few opportunity but it create a real aesthetic close to a sacred mood.

Mourier explains that this alpahbets could be linked to “the ornemental effect of cuneiform & hebrew characters, byt wish to create something new”. The layout is quite orginal too. Text are arranged in short paragraph and set in a free grid of square, creating a fantastic pattern.

The font is now available directly via Velvetyne Type Fondry (VTF) for free and open-source.



Click on the thumbnails to view full size.


About Sébastien Hayez

Art director, graphic designer & illustrator from Lyon, France. Admin at Co-admin of the Facebook group Archives Graphiques Curator at Writer at The Shelf, issue 2.

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