Posts Tagged ‘typography’

word and image are one

January 8, 2009
wordandimageareone - visual poem - sigrid jones

wordandimageareone - by sigrid jones

I don’t play digital games, but I do like to play with digital tools. In the recent holidays I was playing around with some more poetry generators, which I found online. 

My favorite outcome is this visual poem, which I created with the composer on RoboType. This is a great little online tool for creating visual poems with four classic types of font. “Robotype, a type comoposer, that allows playing with letters as graphic elements, exploring each one of the forms, something so extended as typography, draw, design, compose, create.” It allows you more control over the image  than this concrete poetry generator which I posted about here. I guess, if you know how to use design software you can do things like this elsewhere, but I don’t, so I think it is a nifty little tool, and easy to work with so that it could be also used by children. (I just could not figure out how to upload images on the web gallery.) I hope I will find the time to use this generator more often.

The text is based on a quote by dadaist and later mystic Hugo Ball, from his “Dada Fragments” from 1916 “the image and word are one”. Visual poems have been created before, but the dadaists were this first group of people to really explore and experiment with words and letters liberated from their context. When I was a teenager two boys tried to woo me with poems, one used a medieval minne somg, the other one Kurt Schwitters’ Anna Blume. Dada won.

The poetry generator is based on a project, which turned Schwitters’ book Die Scheuche. Märchen (created with Käte Steinitz & Theo van Doesburg) into an online interactive story book, or game in Flash. You could say it is a very different kind of alphabet book. I would like to know what kids make of it.

language and city

December 13, 2007

(Fellow Austrian) Ludwig Wittgenstein described language as a large town, grown from an ancient city into a large town including what today would be modern suburbs:

Our language can be seen as an ancient city: a maze of little streets and squares, of old and new houses, and of houses with additions from various periods; and this surrounded by a multitude of new boroughs with straight regular streets and uniform houses. Ludwig Wittgenstein Philosophical Investigations

(a metaphor which Clifford Geertz expanded to “culture” in his essay “Common Sense as a Cultural System.“) The metaphor can also be reversed, and cities may be read as text:

This video could be seen as a reversal of the project Delete! (I blogged about it here).

In “Kapitaal” (Capital) not the signs but the city is eliminated, and all but the signs remain. The video was created by Studio Smack (via Cross the Breeze). I do agree with the comment of a viewer, that the animation would be better viewed on a big screen, or may be for the small low res YouTube version it could be a bit shorter.

This video “The Child” created by Antoine Bardou-Jacquet is a brilliant animation, showing an entire short story set in an urban (New York) landscape, created only with words and typography. Cult video for fonts lovers and graphic designers says the YouTube description. One of the best typo motion /animations I found on Youtube. Worth watching indeed.


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