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Realtime Voyeur by Raz Ohara

Contributed by Florian Hardwig on Feb 1st, 2014. Artwork published in .
    DSC_0077.jpg
    Florian Hardwig. License: CC BY-NC-SA.

    There are at least two fine things about Raz Ohara’s debut album Realtime Voyeur from 1999: One is the fetching cover version of the Pixies song Where is my Mind. The other one is Gneisenauette, used prominently for the album art.

    The whimsical angular script by Latvian designer Gustavs A. Grinbergs comes in four weights and has numerous alternates. Jan Middendorp supposes that its most peculiar name is derived from Gneisenaustraße, a street and subway station in Berlin-Kreuzberg. Unfortunately, that’s not true, at least the connection is not a direct one. Grinbergs:

    I’d chosen the name Gneisenauette […] because I think this typeface displays something of the robustness of German Fraktur. As I know this is an old German name and I like this name because of its strangeness and it sounds fascinating.

    Gneisenauette is a wonderful oddball, and hard to place in time. There are references to mid-century commercial lettering, it has a strong angular pattern that is reminiscient of German Kurrentschrift from the interwar years, and yet its marker-style (anti)calligraphy is positively untraditional, with whimsical glyphs like ‘g’ or ‘Q’. This novelty quality is carried to extremes in the alternates, with antenna-like swashes on the capitals, or descending forms for ‘l’, ‘t’ or ‘z’.

    The accompanying contemporary monospaced is — the then freshly released — FF Typestar OCR.

    DSC_0078.jpg
    Florian Hardwig. License: CC BY-NC-SA.
    DSC_0076.jpg
    Florian Hardwig. License: CC BY-NC-SA.
    DSC_0067.jpg
    Florian Hardwig. License: CC BY-NC-SA.
    DSC_0066.jpg
    Florian Hardwig. License: CC BY-NC-SA.

    Photos by Magnus Winter

    Typefaces

    • Gneisenauette
    • FF Typestar OCR

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    1 Comment on “Realtime Voyeur by Raz Ohara”

    1. Feb 2nd, 2014  8:55 am

      Such a pleasure to see the rarely used Gneisenauette in use! It’s at the top of my Weird and Wonderful typeface list. And not just because we live right off of Gneisenaus­traße.

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