To the uninitiated, the art of typography may not sound like much of an art at all. Anyone can mess with fonts, right? The truth, though, is that even trained veteran graphic designers can be poor typographers—it is not easy to be good.
But Philippe Apeloig, a French poster designer and typographer, is good. One of the best, actually. Last Friday marked the final day of a six-month retrospective exhibition, “Typorama, Philippe Apeloig, Design graphique,” at the prestigious Musee Les Arts Decoratifs in Paris, feting Apeloig’s life work and achievements. The exhibit showed off his posters, typefaces, books, and corporate identities, celebrating his contributions to French design culture. Design connoisseurs in America, meanwhile, can check out an inclusive monograph, Typorama: The Graphic Work of Philippe Apeloig, from Thames + Hudson.
Read more. [Image: Prisca Martaguet]
In 1983, my high school drama teacher, Marcia Lawrence, assigned us two one-act plays: Brainerd Duffield’s adaptation of the Stephen Vincent Benét story, By The Waters of Babylon; and Thomas Martin’s adaptation of Shirley Jackson’s The Lottery. We read the plays (and the original stories) and discussed the themes. She said we could perform the plays – suggesting this would make a good double-bill – as long as we all supported each play’s statements about non-conformity and anti-war. While this idea might seem a bit too hopeful – naïve, even – we all did. And while we presented an admittedly somber evening of amateur theater, we felt powerful believing that theatre and literature could change the world…even on a cafetorium stage in Dardanelle, Arkansas.
The contributors to this issue understand that power. Whether pushing hot-topic buttons like race, gender or sexuality, telling never-heard or seldom-heard stories of ancestors, injustice or oppression, or teaching others to write their own stories, the dramatists within these pages exercise the power of words and art.
This Issues Issue seems an appropriate theme since the Guild’s very existence is to help protect you from issues relating to censorship, authorial rights, and copyright infringement. As you’ll read in our News section and in Ralph Sevush’s article from The Desk of Business Affairs, your Guild (along with support from Dramatists Legal Defense Fund) is there on the front lines – recently in Sarasota, FL, and Trumbull, CT, and Washington, D.C. – fighting for your rights.
As I watched the Foundry Theater’s acclaimed production of The Good Person of Szechwan this past November, I was reminded of Mrs. Lawrence’s challenge to us 30 years ago. Guild member Bertolt Brecht’s epilogue, spoken to the audience by actor (and Guild Council member), Lisa Kron, packed an extra wallop as she was surrounded by a cast united in the same conviction…
“It is for you to find a way, my friends,
To help good men arrive at happy ends.
You write the happy ending to the play!
There must, there must, there’s got to be a way!”
It might be a bit naïve and out of context, perhaps, but to me, that’s what it feels like to be part of the Guild. A group of good people united by our Bill of Rights, determined to write a better ending.