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“Amalia 18th birthday” postage stamp

Contributed by Matthijs Sluiter on Dec 7th, 2021. Artwork published in
December 2021
.
    “Amalia 18th birthday” postage stamp
    Source: www.munt-online.nl License: All Rights Reserved.

    Princess Amalia, the eldest daughter of Dutch King Willem-Alexander, and therefore heir to the throne, turned eighteen today. This is celebrated with, among other things, a limited edition 24-carat gold stamp (designer yet to be identified). From the website of mail service PostNL (translated):

    The gold stamp features a monochrome portrait of the princess, taken during King’s Day 2021 in Eindhoven. The typeface for the value designation “1” and “Netherlands” is a 2018 design by typedesigner Martin Majoor from Arnhem. For the typography of the title “Amalia 18 years”, MuseoModerno designed by Pablo Cosgaya, Héctor Gatti and Marcela Romero in 2010 was used.

    Apart from Princess Amalia’s age and the stamp designation, the postal service seems to be a bit off or at least confusing when it comes to the age of the typefaces in use. Comma Base, Martin Majoor’s first retail typeface released from his namesake foundry was made available from I Love Typography as a part of their relaunch as typeface shop in June, 2021. As Majoor explains in his Comma Base type specimen (pdf), Comma is “to a large extent based on the lettering I did for a 2017 post stamp design for the Dutch postal service”. In short, “1 / Nederland” here is not a use of Comma Base the typeface, but the lettering that formed its basis: a proto-Comma Base.

    MuseoModerno (not to be confused with Museo by Majoor’s fellow townsman Jos Buivenga) was designed by Omnibus-Type as a custom typeface for the new visual identity by design studio Gorricho for the Museo de Arte Moderno de Buenos Aires, and released under the SIL Open Font License in the same year.

    Typefaces

    • Comma Base
    • MuseoModerno

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    4 Comments on ““Amalia 18th birthday” postage stamp”

    1. The use of Comma Base as a basis is part of a series of golden commemorative stamps. The choice of fonts used for the name of the person portrayed does not seem to be implemented with complete clarity. In addition to MuseoModerno, Cholla Sans is also in use – here it is shown as the only typeface set in capitals, on the Anne Frank stamp.

    2. There is something that instinctively feels so wrong about including Anne Frank in these stamps. Not that we shouldn’t use her portrait in stamps, but she feels so out of place in this series on the royal family.

    3. Oh, absolutely. Maybe selling golden stamps (“24 carat!”) for €50 apiece (or silver ones at half the price) isn’t the most decent way of commemoration anyway.

      Not that it would change a lot, nor that it was obvious with the uniform design, but the golden stamps encompass several subseries. The Anne Frank stamp as shown above is indeed the odd one out: unlike the royals, it belongs to a series about the 75th anniversary of the end of World War II – together with related stamps about the liberation (all very subtly distinguished by the use of all-caps Cholla Sans). There are stamps about Hugo de Groot with Slot Loevestein and Johan van Oldenbarnevelt; domestic animals like the great egret or the honey bee; and all kinds of Dutch icons – Rembrandt, Nijntje, you name it.

    4. Oh nice! The Nijntje one is lovely to see.

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