Well, I didn’t win the Truer Than Fiction award at the Independent Spirit Awards last night. Honestly, a few minutes before they were going to give it out, I was praying that I wouldn’t win. I really didn’t want to get up there on that stage! But I enjoyed myself at the ceremony, which was much more entertaining (and star studded) than I expected. Read Indiewire’s recap of the evening… we were at table #316. Congrats to Laura Dunn, who beat me out with her doc The Unforeseen. It’s opening in New York next Friday, February 29th, at Cinema Village, so definitely check it out if you’re in NYC.
I’ll get one next year! All I have to do is make my second film… more on that soon…
I did a talk at Brown University’s Watson Institute Global Media Lab this week. Myself and professor James Der Derian at center, and a virtual John Santos with chihuahua via projector from San Antonio.
Now it’s off to Los Angeles for the Independent Spirit Awards… wish me luck. You can watch the awards ceremony this Saturday, February 23rd at 5pm EST, on IFC.
Here’s a new video directed by Adam Hauck for one of the songs from the film (it kicks off Experimental Jetset’s interview) as performed by the always excellent rock duo El Ten Eleven. Check out Kristian rocking that double-neck bass/guitar! El Ten Eleven contributed nine songs to the film, and you can now download them from iTunes.
Unless you’ve been avoiding television, newspapers, and all other forms of mass media for the past few months, you’ve probably seen Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama’s “Change We Can Believe In” and “Stand for Change” banners. The typophiles among you have realized that the “change” font Obama’s campaign uses is Gotham, designed by Hoefler & Frere-Jones, originally as a commission for GQ Magazine.
Jonathan Hoefler and Tobias Frere-Jones spoke about the creation of Gotham during our interview for Helvetica, and looking back at their description of what GQ wanted from the font, it sounds surprisingly Obama-esque. “GQ had a dual agenda of wanting something that would look very fresh, yet very established, to have a credible voice to it,” says Hoefler. It also needed to look very masculine and “of-the-moment.” Mission accomplished.
The conversation about the origins of Gotham didn’t make it into the film, but was included among the 41 bonus features on the Helvetica DVD. I’ve posted part of the interview above. Watching this clip, I think it’s interesting that the design of Gotham was influenced by early Modernism, another movement that was about change and social idealism. And I like that the design aesthetic that may help move Obama into the White House was inspired by the humble NY Port Authority Bus Terminal sign.
“All are agreed on one thing, however: Helvetica’s dominating presence. This makes its absence in the world of books all the more intriguing. Of the 50-odd I checked on my shelves, only two were printed in serif-less, Helvetica-like type; both were art books, the rest contained typefaces identical or very close to Times New Roman.”
Are serif fonts actually easier to read in book text, or are we just more used to reading them? Posit your theory…