Award-winning Manchester-based font studio F37 Foundry has this week launched its collaborative new typeface collection. Featuring designs from leading names and emerging talents, it’s truly unlike anything you’ve seen before.
Titled F37 x, this new section of F37 Foundry’s offerings is centred around collaboration and champions the work of people who do not traditionally make typefaces. Lead by work from big name studios and designers, such as Nomad Studio, Anthony Burrill and the late Milton Glaser, F37 x also features typefaces by people with brilliant ideas who have previously been unable to realise them as working fonts.
It’s a novel idea, and one that has been in the works for a good few years. In fact it stems from a collaboration between F37 and Milton Glaser back in 2015, where the two created a revival of a typeface first used on a Carnegie Hall bill poster from 1969.
When it was discovered that the light weights of the font had been lost when it was first digitised, F37 managed to correct this error with the font they made, Glaser Stencil. From there, whenever F37 worked with Lance Wyman and other designers, the idea for a new collaboration section has been quietly humming away in the background.
F37 x Jack Bennett
Glaser Stencil isn’t the only font from that time to get a new lease of life thanks to F37 x. Superfried’s experimental typeface Marbles also got a second chance thanks to the foundry’s assistance.
“Back in 2015 a little typographic idea Superfried proposed for a New York magazine project was rejected,” they explain. “That little idea was recycled and grew into a big personal project called Marbles. It featured a lot of press and even won an award.
“Fast forward to 2023, working with Rodrigo Feunzalida at renowned type foundry F37, Marbles has been developed into an experimental typeface featuring two fonts and four styles.”
Marbles is just one of the 25 typefaces on offer, alongside the rule-breaking contribution by Non-Format called F37 Lara, plus Anthony Burrill’s font inspired by the lettering found on cardboard boxes, appropriately titled: Box. These two in particular are personal favourites of F37 founder Rick Banks, especially the latter as it includes a variable bounce axis that creates a jumpy, rough and ready effect.
As well as being innovative, F37 x is also democratic. In the typeface collection, the work of students is given equal weighting to those of big industry names. This was a conscious decision on the part of Rick, as he had often seen work while lecturing at university which demonstrated brilliant ideas, yet didn’t have the connections or know-how to be turned into a fully-fledged font.
And rather than adhering to a house style, collaborators were encouraged to think outside the box and develop their ideas into broader technical horizons. Clown is a prime example of this as it plays with multiple colour palettes, meanwhile Nifty features lots of interlocking italics.
The full list of collaborators involved with F37 x includes: Alec Tear, Alisa Burzić, Anthony Burrill, Eurico Sá Fernandes, Grey Albornoz, Haider Muhdi, Hector Pottie, Jack Bennett, John Rooney, Keelin Wright, Lance Wyman, Milton Glaser, Non-Format, Nomad Studio, Ochre, Oli Frape, Phillip Block, Spin, and Superfried.
And if you like the look of their creations, head on over to the F37 x collection where they can be purchased by everyone from startups to large businesses.