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Edward Benguiat



Written by Luc Devroye
McGill University
Montreal, Canada
lucdevroye@gmail.com
http://luc.devroye.org
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Born in New York in 1927, Ed grew up in Brooklyn. He was once a very prominent jazz percussionist playing in several big bands with Stan Kenton and Woody Herman, among others. He has created a large number of typefaces between 1970 and 1995. About his career, he once said: I'm really a musician, a jazz percussionist. One day I went to the musician's union to pay dues and I saw all these old people who were playing bar mitzvahs and Greek weddings. It occurred to me that one day that's going to be me, so I decided to become an illustrator. He designed more than 400 faces for PhotoLettering. He played a critical role in establishing The International Typeface Corporation (or ITC) in the late '60s and early '70s. Founded in 1971 by designers Herb Lubalin, Aaron Burns, and Ed Ronthaler, ITC was formed to market type to the industry. Lubalin and Burns contacted Benguiat, whose first ITC project was working on Souvenir. Ed became a partner with Lubalin in the development of U&lc, ITC's famous magazine, and the creation of new typefaces such as Tiffany, Benguiat, Benguiat Gothic, Korinna, Panache, Modern No. 216, Bookman, Caslon No. 225, Barcelona, Avant Garde Condensed, and many more. With Herb Lubalin, Ed eventually became vice-president of ITC until its sale to Esselte Ltd.

Ed is a popular keynote speaker at major type meetings, including, e.g., at TypeCon 2011, where he entertained the crowd with quotes such as I do not think of type as something that should be readable. It should be beautiful. Screw readable. His typefaces---those from PhotoLettering excepted:

  • ITC Avant Garde Gothic (1971-1977, with Andre Gurtler, Tom Carnase, Christian Mengelt, and Erich Gschwind).
  • ITC Modern No. 216 (text family). The Softmaker versions are called M791 Modern and Montpellier.
  • Modern No. 20, after the Stephenson Blake original from 1905. [Image by Kristen Cleghorn]
  • ITC Barcelona (1981).
  • ITC Bauhaus (1974-1975). ITC Bauhaus was codesigned with Victor Caruso. The Softmaker versions are called R790 Sans and Dessau. The Infinitype ersion is Dessau. The Bitstream version is Geometric 752.
  • ITC Benguiat (1977) and ITC Benguiat Gothic (1977-1979). Comic book style faces called Benjamin and Benjamin Gothic on the SoftMaker MegaFont XXL CD (2002). Softmaker also has fonts called B693 Roman and B691 Sans that are identical.
  • Benguiat Roman (1960s).
  • PL Bernhardt (Photo-Lettering, 1970), modeled after a 1930-1931 design by Lucian Bernhard.
  • ITC Bookman (1975). See B791 Roman on the SoftMaker MegaFont XXL CD (2002).
  • Calendar (1960s).
  • ITC Caslon 224 (1983). In 1960, he added Benguiat Caslon Swash, and in 1970, Caslon 223 followed. See C790 Roman on the SoftMaker MegaFont XXL CD (2002), and Caslon CP (2012, Claude Pelletier).
  • ITC Century Handtooled (1993).
  • ITC Cheltenham Handtooled (1993).
  • ITC Edwardian Script (1994).
  • ITC Garamond Handtooled.
  • ITC Korinna (1974): after a 1904 face called Korinna by Berthold. Michael Brady thinks it is a very very close to the Berthold original.
  • Laurent (1960s).
  • Lubalin Graph (1974, ITC). By Herb Lubalin, Ed Benguiat, Joe Sundwall, and Tony DiSpigna.
  • ITC Panache Book (1987).
  • Scorpio (1960s).
  • ITC Souvenir (1977). Kent Lew: Benguiat revived Benton's Souvenir for ITC in the '70s and that was well-received for a while. On the other hand, look what happened after that. Souvenir in the ATF 1923 catalog looks really nice, IMO. Souvenir in the '70s seems cliché now. Souvenir these days would be downright dorky. Souvenir was done by Benguiat in 1967 at PhotoLettering. Morris Fuller Benton's original model was from 1914. It was described by Simon Loxley as follows: Souvenir is a face that is intractably rooted in style to a particular era, although one a half-century after its creation. It is a quintessential late 1960s and 1970s typeface, informal, with full rounded character shapes and rounded serifs, a laid-back Cheltenham. The Bitstream version of ITC Souvenir was called Sovran.
  • ITC Tiffany (1974), a fashion mag typeface family. Adobe says that it is a blend of Ronaldson, released in 1884 by the MacKellar Smiths&Jordan foundry, and Caxton, released in 1904 by American Type Founders.
  • PL Torino (1960, Photo-Lettering), a blackboard bold didone-inspired typeface.
  • In 2004, House Industries released five faces based on the lettering of Ed Benguiat: Ed Interlock (1400 ligatures---based on Ed's Interlock, Photolettering, 1960s), Ed Roman (animated bounce), Ed Script, Ed Gothic and Bengbats.
  • He did logotypes for many companies, including Esquire, New York Times, Playboy, Reader's Digesn, Sports Illustrated, Look, Estée Lauder, AT&T, A&E, Planet of the Apes, Super Fly.
  • Lesser known Photolettering faces include Benguiat Bounce, Benguiat Boutique, Benguiat Bravado, Benguiat Brush, Benguiat Buffalo (+Ornaments), Benguiat Century, Benguiat Cinema, Benguiat Congressional, Benguiat Cooper Black, Benguiat Cracle, Benguiat Crisp, Benguiat Debbie, Benguiat Montage, Benguiat Roman. Scorpio, Laurent and Charisma, all done in the 1960s, are psychedlic types.

Links: Linotype, CV by Elisa Halperin. Daylight Fonts link (in Japanese). Catalog by Daylight, part I, part II.

Pics harvested from the web: Portrait With Ilene Strivzer at ATypI 1999. One more with Strivzer. With Jill Bell at ATypI 1999. In action. At TypeCon 2011 with Matthew Carter and Alejandro Paul. At the same meeting with Carole Wahler and with Roger Black.

FontShop link. Klingspor link.

View Ed Benguiat's typefaces. Ed Benguiat's fonts.

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INTERNAL LINKS
Type designers ⦿ Type designers ⦿ Type scene in New Jersey ⦿ Type scene in New York ⦿ Bauhaus and type design ⦿ Avant Garde typefaces ⦿ Comic/cartoon fonts ⦿ Modern style [Bodoni, Didot, Walbaum, Thorowgood, Computer Modern, etc.] ⦿ Psychedelic types ⦿ Cooper Black ⦿ Garalde or Garamond typefaces ⦿ Fashion mag typefaces ⦿ Blackboard type ⦿ Caslon ⦿ Cheltenham ⦿ Caxton ⦿








file name: Edward Benguiat Andre Gurtler Tom Carnase Christian Mengelt Erich Gschwind I T C Avant Garde Gothic 1971 1977


file name: Herb Lubalin Tom Carnase Edward Benguiat I T C Avant Garde 1970 1977 Poster by Samantha Manning 2014


file name: Herb Lubalin Antonio Di Spigna Joe Sundwall Edward Benguiat I T C Lubalin Graph Demi


file name: Herb Lubalin Tom Carnase Edward Benguiat I T C Avant Garde Bold Condensed 1970 1977


file name: Herb Lubalin Tom Carnase Edward Benguiat I T C Avant Garde Medium 1970 1977


file name: Herb Lubalin Tom Carnase Edward Benguiat I T C Avant Garde 1970 1977 Poster by Valerie Tan 2014


file name: Ed Benguiat Pic


file name: Bauhaus Light


file name: I T C Bauhaus


file name: Edward Benguiat Victor Caruso I T C Bauhaus Heavy 1975


file name: Edward Benguiat Victor Caruso I T C Bauhaus Medium 1975


file name: Victor Caruso Ed Benguiat I T C Bauhaus Medium 1974


file name: Ed Benguiat P L Bernhardt 1970


file name: Ed Benguiat P L Bernhardt 1970b


file name: Ed Benguiat P L Torino 1960


file name: Ed Benguiat P L Torino 1960b


file name: Ed Benguiat I T C Century Handtooled 1993


file name: Ed Benguiat I T C Cheltenham Handtooled 1993


file name: Ed Benguiat I T C Garamond Handtooled 1993


file name: Ed Bengiuiat I T C Caslon224 1983


file name: Ed Benguiat Benguiat Caslon Swash 1960s


file name: Photo Lettering Benguiat Caslon 2012 Poster by John Mayer 2010


file name: Ed Benguiat Benguiat Charisma Photo Lettering 1960s


file name: Ed Benguiat Benguiat Roman 1960s


file name: Ed Benguiat Caslon223 1970


file name: Claude Pelletier Caslon C P 2012


file name: Ed Benguiat Catalog by Daylight


file name: Ed Benguiat Catalog by Daylight


file name: Ed Benguiat I T C Benguiat Gothic 1977 1979


file name: Ed Benguiat I T C Edwardian Script


file name: Ed Benguiat I T C Modern216 1982


file name: Ed Benguiat I T C Souvenir 1970s


file name: Ed Benguiat I T C Souvenir Bold 1970s


file name: Ed Benguiat I T C Souvenir Medium 1977 after Morris Fuller Benton 1914


file name: Ed Benguiat I T C Tiffany Std Heavy


file name: I T C Modern No216


file name: Ed Benguiat Modern No20 Poster by Kristen Cleghorn


file name: Ed Benguiat Modern No20 Poster by Kristen Cleghorn


file name: Ed Benguiat Laurent 1960s


file name: Ed Benguiat Calendar 1960s


file name: Ed Benguiat Scorppio 1960s


file name: Ed Benguiat Pic


file name: Pic Ed Benguiat Ilene Strizver atyp99


file name: Pic Ed Benguiat Ilene Strizver2 atyp99


file name: Pic Ed Benguiat Jill Bell atyp99


file name: Pic Ed Benguiat


file name: Type Con2011 Ed Benguiat Ale Paul Matthew Carter


file name: Carol Wahler Ed Benguiat Type Con2011 New Orleans


file name: Roger Black Ed Benguiat Type Con2011 New Orleans



Luc Devroye ⦿ School of Computer Science ⦿ McGill University Montreal, Canada H3A 2K6 ⦿ lucdevroye@gmail.com ⦿ http://luc.devroye.org ⦿ http://luc.devroye.org/fonts.html