Using a combination of the unique font especially created for #VictoryPages from inscriptions that Soviet soldiers left on the Reichstag building in the spring of 1945, and contemporary art, Liam + Jord animated a series of legendary statements about World War II and the feat of the soldiers to create a kind of digital hall of fame for the fallen.
“Today most of these inscriptions can be seen only in photo archives and museums. On the 75th anniversary of the Victory, we decided to bring them back to life.”
“Together with type studio Сontrast Foundry, we have created a unique font compiled from hundreds of original historical inscriptions. Behind each font character there is a real letter, hand-written by soldiers 75 years ago.”
1945. Spring. Berlin. May. These inscriptions are the voices, words and memories of the victors. With its handwritten characters and symbols, calligraphic and rough, neatly styled and expressively sharp, the font May creates a visual link between the past and the present, between the heroes of The Victory and us, their descendants.
“If you look at the individual symbols and the alphabet, the font may seem a little wild. But combined in words and phrases, this wildness miraculously transforms, creating a hand-written style. Abrupt and tense, the font isn’t trying to please anyone. This font is both historical, referring to wartime, but also modern, unlike anything we’ve seen before — exactly because of this wildness.”
- Contrast Foundry
“When large, the font’s texture is very distinct, as if the letters were written on a rough surface. When small, the texture is hardly visible, leaving only a certain smoothness in type. We’ve managed to achieve this effect by writing an algorithm that modified the letter’s contours. It didn’t just mechanically de-form them and make them ‘ragged’, but allowed us to emphasise the natural feel this font creates.”
- Contrast Foundry
… more than a font.
Variability. Multiple versions of every May font character.
In-type tuning. The font auto-picks clean design when block caps are typed, to improve legibility.
Ligatures. Individual May font graphemes are bound together in joint symbols to represent handwriting.
The font is unique in its apparent handwritten style as well as its variability – each letter has several alternative forms between which you can switch when typing, while the letters themselves are arranged in lines slightly unevenly, as if written on a wall. You can try or download the ‘May’ font from the project’s website here.
The typographic tribute is part of a larger endeavor: #VictoryPages, a versatile documentary project playing out over five social media platforms.