July–September 2012

Latent Stare

An exhibition project that looks at the social and political life of type-design.

Please note our opening hours are from 12:00–18:00. The exhibition will be closed from 6–19 August 2012 for summer break. 

With contributions by Hinrich Sachs, Paul Elliman, Runa Islam, Peter Verheul, Luke Wood, Herman Damen, Karl Nawrot, Jo De Baerdemaeker, Paul Chan, Vasilis Marmatakis, Ji Lee, Christoph Knoth, Frank Adebiaye, Joseph Churchward, Amber Frid-Jimenez, Felix Weigand 

Latent Stare is an exhibition project that looks at the discipline of type-design through a particular critical lens, assembled by David Bennewith who has been working since 2010 on the subject as an advising researcher of Jan van Eyck Academie’s Design department and who, we happily announce, is Casco’s new visual identity designer. 

Type-design is an ever-present, though extremely latent, work in our time of over-information and communication: not only images but also letters saturate daily unconscious and conscious seeing/reading habits. With Latent Stare, David Bennewith singles-out this discipline, out of the larger discipline called “design,” and puts it back into the ecology of everyday practice where the typefaces programmed intention, production and distribution are at constant play. For this reason, this project seems to be highly discipline focused but also extra-disciplinary. It’s speculative of what a typeface could do (the question of its agency) in the public realm, through eighteen different propositions and works by artists and designers. The exhibits might perform beyond the known or deep-rooted concepts and tensions within the discipline of type-design, such as: Tacit historicism, security and familiarity, the suggestion of dependability and/or reliability and ‘truthfulness’ – as the story behind the Rijksoverheid typeface by Peter Verheul reveals or Paul Elliman’s work I can no longer drink tea, I’m as pale as glass without you, I blush to think of you, my heart burns like coal, you are beautiful as a flower and sweet as sugar, or is your heart a stone? I’d fly to you if I had wings, I am yours like a nut in your hand attempts. 

The project takes inspiration from the first four volumes of The Journal of Typographic Research (1967-1971) that bring together technical, scientific, linguistic, artistic and literature based approaches to and within the type-design discipline. As the journal was conceived at a moment when the type-industry was beginning its transition from hybrid-photographic to digital reproduction systems, Latent Stare sees the typeface now fully-immersed in the digital era of communication and production, while suggesting speculative counterpoints. 

The exhibition is organized in a spatial structure designed by artist Olga Balema, who has produced a series of repeated skeletal forms, that appear to maintain both a script and an ideographic sign and which, in turn, connect, support, strangle and separate the works. 

Casco kindly would like to invite you to come and stare at this exhibition.  

Opening on Sunday 8 July, 15:00 with BBQ
Guided Tours, led by David Bennewith on 18, 25 September, 17:00–18:00 
Brunch talk with Hinrich Sachs on Saturday, 22 September, 11:00 


With generous support from the Gemeente Utrecht, Mondriaan Fonds, Fentener van Vlissingen Fonds, Elise Mathilde Fonds and the Jan van Eyck Academie.

Also a warm thank you to the Casco hosts; Caroline, Sofia, Robert, Leanne, and Asia.

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3512PA Utrecht
The Netherlands

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