Fiodor Sumkin – Vintage (redrawn)




I’ve always loved vintage typography (as this blog makes pretty clear), and have collected old, rare type specimen books (as well as the wonderful Dover Archive books) for years. I recently discovered the work of Amsterdam/Paris based Fiodor Sumkin who clearly shares this interest, but what makes his work far more interesting than simply using vintage letterforms in his work (as many of us like to try from time to time) is that he “samples and re-renders” these vintage letterforms, into new, eccentric, hand drawn compositions. They represent a kind of anti-technological statement in the face of digital perfection – a movement that has been swelling up for a few years now (see post on Rude from last year) – but also a kind of “remixed history”, taking the ‘old’ (and the personality and historical associations embedded in old type specimens) and making the ‘brand new’, with a decidedly cheeky, contemporary if not occasionally cynical edge. Combine that with child-like, 45° angle magic marker fill lines, and the occasional illustrative elements that wander in, and you’ve got something very interesting indeed.





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