De Beweeging (“the Movement”) in Antwerp, Belgium (1984–2001) was an inventive dance and theater center that organized a yearly festival. In the mid-1990s I designed their festival programs and posters.
An exceptional assignment was the production of two booklets about the experimental choreographer Eric Raeves. The occasion was a unique performance produced for museums. The dancers, undressed, performed slow, abstract patterns, creating a live art installation. As museums and art centers were the main target audience for the publication, its character had to be halfway between a contemporary art catalog and a dance brochure.
I chose the recent Emigre typeface Base 9 Sans (1994). For her design of the whole Base suite, Zuzana Licko had started with the screen fonts (as Matthew Carter had for Verdana). The screen fonts, their pixel widths adapted to the limited resolution of that era’s computer screens, largely dictated the look of the printer fonts. As Emigre wrote: “This was a unique challenge, and generated some very surprising results that we would not have arrived at otherwise.”
The same was true for the editorial design. At the time I found this experimental typeface with a strong personality was ideal for a two-part publication that was to represent a choreographer’s unorthodox approach to dance and art. The task to combine two languages, Dutch and English, in a way that guided readers clearly from one column to the next, was an interesting challenge and a nice excuse for experimenting – using two weights of Base 9 and two colors.