Letterform Archive – An Exploration of Hong Kong Type Design

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An Exploration of Hong Kong Type Design

An Exploration of Hong Kong Type Design
with Adonian Chan

Co-presented by Book Arts & Special Collections, San Francisco Public Library
Online Lecture at Letterform Archive
Tue, Jul 12, 2022
6:00pm–7:30pm PT

This lecture will encompass two type design and research projects: Hong Kong Beiwei Zansyu and Hong Kong Type.

"Hong Kong Beiwei Zansyu" refers to one of the most popular and significant calligraphy styles in Hong Kong with numerous applications on the street and daily life, like shop signs dating back to the 1950s. Its history can even be traced to the Southern and Northern dynasty (420–589).

"Hong Kong Type" is a Chinese metal type designed by Samuel Dyer from the London Missionary Society of the 19th century. The production was conducted in Hong Kong Anglo-Chinese College from 1847–1857 and was considered to be the most beautiful Chinese type in that era.

The Hong Kong Heritage Museum showcased Hong Kong Type No. 4 during its 2020-2021 "Between the Lines" exhibition for which Adonian Chan designed a typeface based on Hong Kong Type. The redesign of Hong Kong Type explores how ancient design inspires the design of today.

This and all Letterform Lectures are a public aspect of the Type West postgraduate certificate program. Register to attend remotely.

About Adonian Chan

Adonian Chan is a Hong Kong type designer, graphic designer, and musician. After graduating from Hong Kong Polytechnic University, he co-founded Trilingua Design with Chris Tsui in 2010. In 2018, he published the book A Study on Hong Kong Beiwei Calligraphy & Type Design, which documented the eight years of research on Hong Kong Beiwei, as well as his type design “Hong Kong Beiwei Zansyu." The book won the “Grand Award” and the “Distinguished Publishing Awards” of “Hong Kong Publishing Biennial Awards 2019”. His type design won the New York Type Directors Club’s "Typeface Design Award" and Tokyo Type Directors Club’s "Excellent Work." He's also the winner of the “2019 DFA Hong Kong Young Design Talent Award” and is co-curator of Hong Kong's largest design festival “deTour 2020” & “deTour 2021."

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