The self-titled debut album Swedish singer-songwriter Tove Styrke was released on 12 November 2010. It was preceded by two singles, “Million pieces” and “White Light Moment”. While the cover of the former used Motto, a contemporary Art Deco typeface, the latter introduced another “Tangram” typeface that also has letters made from basic geometric shapes. Arco was designed by Nicolas Massi and released just a few months earlier. It’s not unlike an alphabet drawn by W.A. Dwiggins in 1930 for the cover for Paul Hollister’s book American Alphabets, see Dwiggins Deco, albeit less balanced in regard to widths and weight distribution.
Arco is not exactly quick to read (the typeface sample is a case in point), but when used in small doses, it makes for a spectacular display face. When it came to the album cover, the designers apparently got cold feet, or maybe some overcautious marketing person vetoed: The front cover shows the very readable (and very generic) Akzidenz-Grotesk Condensed. To compensate, the back cover flaunts a whole carpet made of triangles and circles. Arco is also used for the covers of “High and Low” and “Call My Name” from 2011. On the latter, it is paired with ITC Blaze. In all those instances, Arco’s symmetrical Baby Teeth-like S is replaced by the more dynamic glyph encoded as numeral 3.
Art direction and design by Helen Svensson and Thomas Ökvist.