After a short summer break Grafik’s Letterform Live series of events returned last Wednesday with a night devoted to ‘Gaming’ and typography. Presented in partnership with Monotype and the ISTD and hosted by Protein Studios in Shoreditch, Letterform Live sees five different speakers give a short presentation on a shared subject. Each taking a single letterform as their starting point for a personal journey through the subject matter. The world of games proved to be a rich and varied topic, I must be careful not to say video games here because of course not all games are computerised… Caroline, our editor and compere, introduced the event with a reminder of this. Caroline discussed her “analogue childhood” of card and board games prior to her first exposure to the digital world at age ten – a Pong arcade machine in Benidorm that led to a whole week’s holiday money disappearing in one short afternoon.
We then moved from Pong to something quite different, our first speaker of the night was Marie Foulston, curator of Video Games at the V&A museum and “Queen Roughhouser” at Wild Rumpus, an indie game event collective. Marie began her talk with her letterform, a small and solitary white ‘z’ on a black page. Marie revealed that this was the initial letter of the word “zero”, typeset in Letter Gothic, a font designed by the excellently named Roger Roberson, who coincidentally lived in Kentucky (this will make sense shortly).