Our Polite Society: Vaguely Specified Objects
“In the beginning of 2014 Our Polite Society and two other design studios (Åbäke and Dexter Sinister) were invited by the graphic design festival of Chaumont, France to come up with a concept for an exhibition in the Chapelle de Jesuites. We took the invitation to “Three Projects: This is Not a Wild Card” as an opportunity to collect and present railroad signs, gathered along the route Amsterdam–Chaumont, leading from the Netherlands via Belgium to France.
Taking these signs out of their everyday functional living space and placing them in the sphere of a graphic design exhibition, we wanted to activate them in a new way, to propose and allow a new way of looking at them. At the same time, we want to point to the archiving/conserving/treasuring function of a font: a font not as a toolbox filled with the letters of an alphabet, but as a container and transporter, as part of a road trip.
The forms we chose for the presentation of the signs are font and type specimen. Here, all signs come together with shared properties and in an arbitrary order, generated by the production process (first font production software, then offset printing). The presentation in the Chapelle des Jesuites consists of a series of printing sheets on wooden panels and an edition of specimen books. The dingbat font is made available for download to the visitors of the exhibition (each book comes with a font download code).”