Brass mon amour was a photographic exhibition, and part of the Photolux Festival 2022, a photography festival in Lucca (Tuscany, Italy). The exhibition delved into the history of the film director Tinto Brass showing very interesting unpublished material and offering ample space for his erotic research. For this reason the curators decided to use Fantasia Type’s Brass for the visual identity of the exhibition. The typeface indeed is a tribute to the eccentric and fantastical world of Brass.
The design of the titles in the posters, the typographic animations in Brass’ movies opening sequences, the attention to typography that constantly emerges in the sets, link the director to the type foundries that exploded in the golden age of photo composition, of photomechanical titling machines – such as those produced by the American Visual Graphics Corporation – and of rubdown transfer sheet alphabets including those produced by Letraset or Mecanorma. It is precisely the latter French company that best meets the expressive needs desired by Brass for the titles of his works.
In fact, besides direct competitor Letraset – they released Sinaloa used in Monella (1998) and Baby Teeth Opaque used in Salon Kitty (1976) – at least seven films directed by Brass use typefaces produced by Mecanorma: La chiave (1983) and Fermo Posta Tinto Brass (2002) use Plakat. The logo of Capriccio (1987) is set with Full Strokes; and Via Face Don is the logo typeface for Così fan tutte (1992). Miranda (1985), Paprika (1991) and Fermo Posta Tinto Brass (1995), all three are associated with Bronx. Only one other typeface recurs as frequently in his films, underscoring Brass’ strong interest in Art Deco aesthetics: Broadway, designed by Morris Fuller Benton in 1927 for ATF – available over the years from VGC and Linotype, among others – and used by Brass for the titles of Action (1980), L’uomo che guarda (1994), and Hotel Courbet (2009).
Among the posters and photos in the exhibition there’s also the Brass specimen, published by Press Press Milano.
The exhibition was curated by Caterina Varzi, Enrico Stefanelli, Chiara Ruberti, Rica Cerbarano e Francesco Colombelli and designed by the Photolux Festival design team.