Lustful Lucian’s Luscious Letters

Lucian Bernhard was a master of many arts. He is less celebrated for his poster than his typefaces, but while he was in Germany and later (after the Nazis banned his work) in the United States he produced cases of them. Bernhard had developed typefaces for Flisch and Bauer Type foundries in Germany, including a transitional bold brush script. He designed his first elegant script, Bernhard, in 1922 while traveling from Germany to New York on a steamship. In 1928 he joined forces with American Type Foundry, for who he produced his family of gothics. He believed that sans serif type should not be used for text, once writing: “There is no doubt that the best type for continuous reading is the one in which schoolbooks, novels, and newspapers are printed: Garamond, Jenson, or Goudy Old Style.” Understanding that display faces were subject to the whims of fashion, however, he cluttered the market with new advertising faces. Whenever I think I have found all the specimen books designed with his trademark and signature faces, along comes another. Below is one such gem. For me its like the Beatles’ White Album, although its black and about type. But his faces are music to these ears.

The Works of Lucian Bernhard

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