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Type Symposium at SFPL



The Book Arts and Special Collections Center of the San Francisco Public
Library Presents
                                        THE PARMENIDES PROJECT:
        The hand & the computer in an early twenty-first century book, a symposium


SAN FRANCISCO--Ever wonder how a typeface is made? Now you can learn how
it's done, both in metal and digitally! For two days in June, you can
witness the creation of a new typeface using techniques ranging from the
15th Century of Gutenberg to the 21st Century Digital Age.

In 1995, Peter Rutledge Koch, printer and publisher, invited Robert
Bringhurst, the prominent Canadian writer and poet to translate the
fragments of the pre-Socratic philosopher Parmenides of Elea into English.
Bringhurst's translation was commissioned for the third of a series of
publications in new textual formats of ancient Greek texts. At the same
time, Koch collaborated with Christopher Stinehour, stone-cutter and
lettering artist, to develop a new Greek typeface in digital format based
on the hand lettering that Mr. Stinehour had done for his earlier Diogenes
project. Soon thereafter, Koch invited Dan Carr, typefounder and
punch-cutter, to design a second archaic Greek typeface especially for the
Parmenides fragments. Mr. Carr has cut by hand 24 steel punches to drive
matrices and cast the metal type for the hand-setting and letterpress
printing of the Greek text. The four collaborators will discuss the great
typographic traditions in the light of the marriage of ancient technologies
to digital design in creating an exemplary book for the 21st Century.

Each of the participants is a master craftsman in his own discipline(s) and
will bring to the discussion his own philosophic and artistic traditions.
The collaboration has been ongoing for over 5 years and is now nearing
completion. This seminar is about the nature of that collaboration.

The seminar will be held Sunday, June 10, from 1:00 to 5:00 p.m., and
Monday, June 11, from 10:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., followed by refreshments and
informal discussion. The seminar will be in the Koret Auditiorium and
refreshments will be served in the Latino-Hispanic Community Room, LH 58 A,
both on the Lower Level of the Main Library, 100 Larkin St., Civic Center.

The Parmenides Project should be of special interest to typographers,
designers, librarians and historians of print culture, digital and book
publishing industry professionals, aspiring as well as accomplished
practitioners of the book arts, and to anyone interested in classical
philosophy and poetry. Discussion and commentary will be encouraged. For
specifics of the seminar, please visit Peter Koch's website at
http://www.peterkochprinters.com, or contact him at 510-849-0673.

This event is sponsored by the Marjorie G. and Carl W. Stern Book Arts and
Special Collections Center of the San Francisco Public Library, and through
the generosity of The Bancroft Library, The Center for the Book at Mills
College, The Reva & David Logan Foundation, The California Center for the
Book, and The Book Club of California. All events at the Public Library are
free and open to the public. For more information please call 415-557-4560.

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