The Museum für Naturkunde Berlin (Museum of Natural Science) dedicates a special exhibition to DNA, celebrating the 60th anniversary of the discovery of the double helix structure. It is entitled Entwicklungen (“Developments”). The wordmark on the exhibition posters, postcards and banners is a literal typographic interpretation – it gradually develops from light to bold.
The typeface in use is Adrian Frutiger’s Univers, famous for its numerous systematically conceived styles. More precisely, it is the extremely space-saving Univers Ultra Condensed. In the original Univers series, this branch spans three weights (39, 49, 59). Entwicklungen however features more gradations than that. The reworked Univers Next has five weights in its Compressed range (110–510), but it isn’t a match either: its boldest weight is Medium only – clearly lighter than the ‘GEN’ at the end of the wordmark (Gen is German for “gene”, by the way). What the designer actually did here is fatten up the letters by adding a stroke. It shows in the ‘K’ (in Univers, the vertical and the diagonals meet in a point) and the too heavy joins of ‘N’. The design nevertheless is an intelligent and fitting solution, with one minor minus point for the execution.