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The ubiquity of Helvetica

I was asked to write a few words for the BBC about the ubiquity of Helvetica.

Subway signage Helvetica
NYC subway photo by GmanViz

“It might now have a love/hate relationship among graphic designers, but that’s generally more to do with its misuse, placed in the wrong surroundings, rather than any fault with the typographical design.”

Read more on the BBC website.

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4 comments about “The ubiquity of Helvetica”

  1. I do agree with the misuse of Helvetica being a reason for designers who end up hating it. Beautifully written article by the way. What do you think of Neue Haas Grotesk vs Helvetica?

  2. From what I understand, some of the original Neue Haas Grotesk (NHG) characteristics were lost in translation, first in the switch to Helvetica, and then as Helvetica was updated and digitised over the years. Christian Schwartz was commissioned to digitise the original NHG for Linotype. You can read more about that on Christian’s website and through Font Bureau.

  3. We are always in a love-hate relationship with this typeface. Personally I think it always looks good but it’s true that continued use and poor location can severely damage the image of the beautiful typography.

  4. Gotham vs Helvetica

    The next box office blockbuster.

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