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Combining Typefaces

Workshop Combining Typefaces at the Institute Digital Communication Environments (IDCE), 30. January – 3. February 2023

Key data

ECTS points
Next start
30. January 2023
1 Week
Teaching language
German / English
CHF 900.– (view fees)
Study mode


Combining typefaces is, no doubt, greatly attractive to a typographer. What is called a typographical Reiz in German has a double meaning though. On the one hand, it suggests something attractive, alluring; on the other hand, it suggests something irritating, as typeface mixtures can strain our eyes and possibly also our perception – due to a different, unfamiliar, or even unusual aspect. That’s why this topic has always divided the typographic community into supporters and opponents. 

Combining typefaces is considered one of the great challenges within typography. An in-depth knowledge and study of typefaces are considered necessary – a good instinct for typefaces being considered a prerequisite. But how do we achieve this? And what exactly is the appeal of a blend of typefaces? What are the reasons to choose a combination of typefaces? And how do we achieve both coherent and interesting, expressive combinations of typefaces? 

The discussion focuses on three possible uses of typeface: singular, paucal, and plural based on a classification of typefaces as revised by the lecturer. Based on the poles of analogy and contrast, the diversity of typeface mixtures can be systematically examined. The workshop is intended for people who want to contrast their gut feeling with an analytical view. Previous knowledge of Adobe InDesign is recommended.

Institute Digital Communication Environments (IDCE)

Visual communication is a tool of knowledge generation in its own right. Visualizations make things perceptible, imaginable and graspable.


Institute Digital Communication Environments IDCE

FHNW University of Applied Sciences and Arts Northwestern Switzerland Academy of Art and Design, Institute Digital Communication Environments (IDCE) High-rise: D 5.03 Freilager-Platz 1 CH - 4142 Münchenstein near Basel