Grifi is both a platform and an online avatar created by designer Benjamin Dumond, as an extension of his master thesis at ÉSAD Grenoble Valence, dealing with concepts in type design. The aim is to explore textual potentials through various means, including essays, fictions, tools, thought experiments and the production of type families.
Grifi mixes technology and occult inspirations to try and offer new perspectives on typography and writing in a more general sense. The texts are often a blend of genres, while the designs explore creation without drawing, by reserving a generous space for experimental tools and processes.
The first version of the website, online from 2021 until the end of 2023, featured text elements both meant to be read and seen. The titles are set in a forcefully compressed, preliminary version of Benjamin Dumond’s own Michaux, transforming the interface into a slow experience of discovery. The running text, notes and recurrent ASCII-like decorative elements use Fragen, designed by Lucas Descroix and available from The Designer Foundry. The light weight of the rather sturdy slab-serif offers a nice contrast to the semi-cryptic typographic landscapes of the titles.