Bauhausbücher (Lars Müller Publishers reissue)
1 Comment on “Bauhausbücher (Lars Müller Publishers reissue)”
Thank you for this contribution, Kai!
I have added a couple of captions with additional font IDs. This post is about the recent reissue with English translations (and specifically volumes 10, 11, 13, and 14) – the design date hence is 2021. The basic designs and layouts closely follow the original ones. That’s why we include László Moholy-Nagy in the design credits. It’s important to note, though, that the fonts listed here are predominantly those chosen by Integral Lars Müller for (digitally) typesetting the English text.
In some cases, they are largely identical to those used in the 1920s, for example Michael Wörgötter’s revival LD Genzsch Antiqua standing in for Friedrich Bauer’s Genzsch-Antiqua, or Akzidenz-Grotesk fett in analog and digital form on the jackets of Holländische Architektur and Dutch Architecture.
In other cases, the designers of the facsimile edition opted for fonts that come close in their overall look, but are not exactly period correct. Cubism appears to use various styles from Helvetica, which became available only decades later. The original edition uses older grotesks with more contrast, see pages 64/65 and 85. Likewise, page 97 of From Material to Architecture uses Volta, released only in the mid-1950s. The original edition features a related wide Clarendon/Egyptienne. Sometimes the devil is in the details: several styles of Berthold’s Akzidenz-Grotesk were in distribution in the early 1900s, but the Super weight used in the facsimile edition wasn’t added before 1968.
I’d be curious to know which other fonts Integral Lars Müller sourced. The caption on page 27 from Dutch Architecture uses an unidentified font that, with its straight-sided rounds, is similar to Neue Moderne Grotesk, but has a high waistline like in Venus. The caption on page 97 of From Material to Architecture appears to use a digitization of Neue Moderne Grotesk. It’s neither Dada Grotesk, Cairoli Classic, nor Slavia. FSL’s faithful revival, Neue Moderne Grotesk FSL, comes close, but is not a perfect match either, it seems.
Another thing to note is that not all text in the facsimile edition is re-set. This is evident in the jacket design for Cubism: “Bauhausbücher” (in the boldest weight of Neue Moderne Grotesk) and “Albert Gleizes” (in Breite halbfette Grotesk) are photographically reproduced from the original. Only the English title was added, replacing the German “Kubismus”. The selected font appears to be Helvetica Inserat or a version thereof, such as CG Triumvirate Inserat, Swiss 921, Nimbus Sans Black Condensed. etc. In any case, it’s a design that didn’t exist yet in 1928, and is different from the original letterforms (which are from an unidentified typeface, or possibly custom drawn).
The Bauhausbücher were first published in German language by Albert Langen Verlag in Munich between 1925 and 1930. If you want to see the original books, head over to the Letterform Archive. They photographed all fourteen volumes (plus additional Bauhaus publications) for their Bauhaus Typography at 100 exhibition in 2021/2022. Here’s an overview of the covers. Last but not least, don’t miss the article about “Typefaces Used by the Bauhaus” compiled by Tanya George and Stephen Coles.