Type Over Time

The Type Directors Club celebrated its 70th anniversary with a day-long series of typography talks and an evening reception on Friday, March 10th, held at the School of Visual Arts Theater, 333 West 23rd Street.

A panel of type luminaries spoke about their careers, their views on the typographic professions, memories of the Type Directors Club, and the future of type.
The day ended with a 6 pm cocktail reception at the SVA Theater. View the photo album of the event here.

Speakers included TDC Medalists Ed Benguiat, Louise Fili, Paula Scher, and Erik Spiekermann, former TDC presidents Allan Haley and Charles Nix, and Greg Gazdowicz, Elizabeth Carey Smith, Jessica Svendsen, and Zipeng Zhu. The videos of their talks can be viewed here on the website as part of our Type Legends series. The young designers panel, moderated by Debbie Millman, can be viewed here.

Twenty-nine Type Directors Club Medals have been awarded in recognition of outstanding contributions to typography. Hermann Zapf won the first in 1967 and Emigre (Zuzana Licko and Rudy VanderLans) was honored with the most recent in 2016.

The Type Directors Club was formed in 1946 in New York City and is a professional organization dedicated to educating its international membership and the graphic arts and design communities about the value of typography in communication.

This event was sponsored by
School of Visual Arts, Monotype, Adobe Typekit, and House Industries

School of Visual Arts Theater
333 West 23rd Street, New York City

Date and Time
Friday, March 10th, 9 a.m. to 7:30 p.m.


Doors Open

Opening Remarks

Louise Fili (video)

Erik Spiekermann (video)

Allan Haley, freelance writer and traveling typographer (video)

Lunch Break

Ed Benguiat — Interview by Debbie Millman (video)

Paula Scher (video)

Charles Nix, Monotype

Panel (video)
Debbie Millman, Moderator
Greg Gazdowicz, Type Designer,Commercial Type
Elizabeth Carey Smith, The Letter Office
Jessica Svendsen, Associate Creative Director, Dropbox
Zipeng Zhu

6:00–7:30 p.m.
Cocktail reception

ED BENGUIAT has designed over 600 typefaces including Tiffany, Bookman, Panache, Edwardian Script, and Benguiat, and has designed logotypes for top publications and brands, including The New York Times, Playboy, Sports Illustrated, Coca-Cola, AT&T, A&E, and the original Planet of the Apes film. Benguiat, a Brooklyn native, was awarded the TDC Medal in 1989. more

LOUISE FILI is a prolific graphic designer and author who is known for type and lettering that resonates with historical, cultural, and literary allusions. She has applied her vision to hundreds of book covers, branding for iconic New York restaurants, and package designs. Fili was awarded the TDC Medal in 2015. more

PAULA SCHER, a partner in the New York office of Pentagram, is best known for her eclectic approach to typography, as characterized by her landmark identity for The Public Theater and graphic identities for top brands, such as Citibank and Tiffany & Co. Scher’s output spans identity and branding systems, promotional materials, environmental graphics, packaging, and publication design. Scher received the TDC Medal in 2006. more

ERIK SPIEKERMANN, an internationally recognized information architect, type designer and author, is the managing partner and creative director of Edenspiekermann, with offices in Amsterdam, Berlin, San Francisco, and Stuttgart. Spiekermann’s typefaces FF Meta and ITC Officina are considered modern classics, and he is the force behind the design of many well-known brands, such as Audi, Bosch, and Volkswagen. A founder of FontShop, Spiekermann was awarded the TDC Medal in 2011. more

ALLAN HALEY is a consulting typographer and storyteller from the Boston area with expertise in fonts, font technology, type, and typographic communication. He held the position of director of words and letters at Monotype for fifteen years and has six books and hundreds of articles to his credit. He is a past president of the Type Directors Club and was executive vice president of International Typeface Corporation. In his career as a consulting typographer, Haley has worked with Apple, Adobe, Linotype, IBM, and other leading corporations. more

CHARLES NIX is an American designer, typographer, and educator, who has spent the last 25 years designing books, ebooks, and typefaces and teaching typography and graphic design. Since 2015, he has been a senior type designer at Monotype in New York, and served as president of the Type Directors Club in 2009.

GREG GAZDOWICZ, a Brooklyn-based typeface designer at Commercial Type, studied at the Maryland Institute College of Art. Greg worked as a graphic designer at branding studios, start-ups and non-profits before he began specializing in typeface design, and he completed the Type@Cooper Extended program in 2014. more

ELIZABETH CAREY SMITH runs The Letter Office, a design practice in New York City specializing in typography, lettering, type design, branding, and data visualization. Smith has worked for an array of corporate and media clients, including fashion ad agencies, arts organizations, magazines, and startups. An avid member of the typographic community, Smith serves on the board of Type Directors Club and is one of the founding members of Alphabettes, an organization for and by women in type. more

JESSICA SVENDSEN is a designer working in identity, editorial design, and illustration. Currently an Associate Creative Director at Dropbox, Svendsen also teaches typography as adjunct faculty at Parsons The New School and the Pratt Institute. She previously worked as a designer on the global communications team at Apple and at Pentagram New York for partner Michael Bierut. more

ZIPENG ZHU is a New York-based freelance art director, designer, illustrator, and animator who specializes in razzle-dazzle design that moves, surprises, and captivates. After moving to New York from Shenzhen, Zhu graduated from the School of Visual Arts and was on the Sagmeister & Walsh team, creating designs, illustrations, and animations for its Jewish Museum identity and rebranding project. more

DEBBIE MILLMAN is an award-winning author, educator, designer, brand strategist, and host of the long-running podcast Design Matters. She has worked with over 200 of the world’s largest brands, including the redesign of Burger King and merchandizing for Star Wars. With Steven Heller, she co-founded the first graduate program in branding at the School of Visual Arts. Millman currently serves on the board of Type Directors Club and is President Emeritus of the AIGA. more