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UAL Research Online

Letterpress: contemporary cultural resonances

Dixon, Catherine (2009) Letterpress: contemporary cultural resonances.

Type of Research: Other
Creators: Dixon, Catherine

This collection of articles explores the recent revival of traditional letterpress practices within the cultural context of São Paulo, Brazil. Once a default communication technology, letterpress was commercially overtaken by lithographic and digital techniques and further diminished as a result of local bans on public posters and advertising. Presented as intentionally discursive, the three articles combine in-situ research that fuses practice and observation at the point of production and within the culture in which it is experienced.

The articles appeared in issues 28, 29 and 30 (2009-2012) of Matrix (Whittington Press), one of the leading international publications for those working with letterpress printing. The aesthetic is implicit in the process and the delivery through the publication sympathetically embeds the text with a typographic integrity, alongside letterpress prints produced by Dixon in Brazil.

The first article ‘São Paulo: a lesson in letterpress’, focuses on pedagogy and the use of letterpress as a mechanism for reinvigorating the digital design practice. The second article, ‘Letterpress from the street: Gráfica Fidalga, São Paulo’, explores the process of a street vernacular – lambe-lambe (a typographic form of fly-posting) – now all but disappeared yet finding new resonances within local arts communities, and further afield as a focus for global visual tourism. The third article, ‘Printing a way to a better future: Stories from Xiloceasa, São Paulo’, discusses the benefits of visualizing language through the use of letterpress within low literacy and marginalized communities.

Research for ‘Letterpress from the street’, was presented as a peer-reviewed conference paper, ‘Catherine Dixon and Henrique Nardi, Lambe-lambe letters: Gráfica Fidalga, São Paulo’ for The heart of the letter, Association Typographique International Annual Conference, 2009, Mexico City. Two short films ‘Printing days’ and ‘Moving days’ by Dixon and Nardi were made as part of the research and shown at the conference.

Additional Information (Publicly available):

For records for individual articles, please see: http://ualresearchonline.arts.ac.uk/5723/; http://ualresearchonline.arts.ac.uk/5724/; http://ualresearchonline.arts.ac.uk/5725/.

Your affiliations with UAL: Colleges > Central Saint Martins
Date: 2009
Date Deposited: 20 Jan 2014 16:35
Last Modified: 20 Jan 2014 16:35
Item ID: 6351
URI: https://ualresearchonline.arts.ac.uk/id/eprint/6351

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