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LUC DEVROYE


ABOUT







Otl Aicher

Ulm-born designer (1922-1991) who, in 1953, along with Inge Scholl and Max Bill, founded the influential Ulm School of Design. He became famous as the lead designer for the 1972 Olympics in Munich. His main contribution to type design was Rotis (1988, Agfa-Monotype). He also created the typeface Traffic for the München public transport. He adapted Univers for Bulthaupt.

Aicher was a world expert on pictograms, having designed, e.g., the pictograms for the 1972 Munich Olympics, and his visual language system of over 900 pictograms. Robin Kinross and Erik Spiekermann discuss the pros and cons of Rotis.

Hrant Papazian sums up Rotis, a family disliked by many type designers, but that has some oomph: Rotis -the typeface- is admirable not for its typographic merit, but for its lion-hearted spirit, its golden intentions - things so totally lacking in almost every other font ever made. Norbert Florendo, who worked with him on and off, muses: If anything, Aicher was a formalist in turmoil. A philosopher in spirit who was shackled by his sense of order. He called for revolution in design and typography, but adhered to the grid (anti-nature) in distrust of chaos. He admired Adrian Frutiger immensely and one can undoubtably see how Univers influenced the Rotis matrix. If one reads deeper into Aichers Typographie, one will see Aichers concepts as being less typographic (relating to type design and type layout) and more involved with humans within a rapidly changing environment in need of new symbology and notation systems. [...] I am far more an admirer of Herr Aicher than Rotis the type family. Rotis was named after the village (Rotis über Leutkirch) in Allgäu where Aicher lived from 1972 and died in 1991. Typophile discussion. URW shows the Monotype WMF Rotis family (2007) which was exclusively used by WMF AG. The Rotis family consists of Rotis Serif (1988), Rotis Semi Serif (1988), Rotis Sans Serif (1989) and Rotis SemiSans (1989).

Author of these books:

This biography reveals that Aicher was a German soldier in the second world war, both on the Russian and French fronts. In 1953, he founded the HfG (Hochschule für Gestaltung) in Ulm, and he helped with the graphic design for the Olympic Games in München in 1972. Discussion of his contributions by the typophiles. Markus Rathgeb wrote Otl Aicher (2006, Phaidon Press Limited, London), which is about Aicher's life as a graphic designer, and has little about his type design.

Vendors of Rotis and typefaces like Rotis: Rotis Sans Serif (Linotype), Rotis Semi Serif (Monotype ), Rotis SemiSans (Monotype ), Rotis Serif (Monotype ), Rotis SansSerif (Adobe), Cutoff Pro (URW++), Rotis Sans Serif (Monotype ), Rotis SemiSans (Adobe), Rotis Semi Serif (Adobe), Rotis Serif (Adobe), Diphthong (Diphthong Type Foundry), Cutoff Pro Regular (URW++).

Klingspor link. FontShop link. Linotype link.

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file name: Otl Aicher Rotis Semi Serif Bold 1989


file name: Otl Aicher Rotis 1988 Poster by Nicolas Garcia 2014


file name: Otl Aicher Rotis 1988 Poster by Julie Fouts 2014


file name: Otl Aicher Rotis Semi Sans 1989


file name: Otl Aicher Rotis Semi Sans 1989b


file name: Otl Aicher Rotis Semi Sans Std Light 1989


file name: Otl Aicher Rotis Semi Serif 1988


file name: Otl Aicher Rotis Serif 1988


file name: Otl Aicher Rotis Serif 1988b


file name: Otl Aicher Rotis Serif 1988c


file name: Otl Aicher Rotis Serif Std65 Bold 1988


file name: Otl Aicher Rotis Serif 1988 Poster by Alireza Jajarmi 2014


file name: Otl Aicher Rotis Serif 1988 Poster by Alireza Jajarmi 2014b


file name: Otl Aicher Rotis Serif 1988 Poster by Alireza Jajarmi 2014c


file name: Otl Aicher Rotis I I Sans


file name: Otl Aicher Rotis 1988 Poster by Paula Flores Ortiz 2016


file name: Otl Aicher Rotis 1988 Poster by Paula Flores Ortiz 2016


file name: Otl Aicher Rotis 1988 Poster by Ryan Hass 2016


file name: Otl Aicher Munich1972 Nine Pics


file name: Otl Aicher Munich1972 Swimming


file name: Otl Aicher Munich1972 Olympics 1


file name: Otl Aicher Munich1972 Olympics 3







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