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Leonhard Laupichler and Sophia Brinkgerd’s New Aesthetic 2 showcases 98 contemporary typefaces

In an unparalleled tour-de-force of typographic showcase, New Aesthetic 2, from Munich and New England-based designers Leonhard Laupichler and Sophia Brinkgerd, makes abundant the typographic expertise and prowess of the contemporary discipline. Highlighting 98 typefaces and their respective designers, the book is the highly-anticipated sequel to the predecessor’s debut in 2019 – a self-published project as part of Laupichler’s BA thesis. With New Aesthetic 2 the team sought a publisher, partnering with Munich-based imprint Sorry Press to deliver the goods, including its own typeface Sorry Sans for the publication’s design, only limited by the “geographical separation of the Atlantic Ocean” between the two.

Following Brinkgerd joining Laupichler for the book’s production, the dynamic duo began collating work in 2020, telling us “we accumulated a large number of typographic work that caught our eye for different reasons,” before refining down their selection for a greater editorial balance. “Our project is a lot about aesthetic variety and representation of style and creative backgrounds,” they explain, hoping to further pursue the latter through the book’s curatorial design as well as its visual aesthetic. “The design became more structured and organised and even more minimal,” they add, keeping the overall design “very silent,” supportive and bolstering rather than acting as a distraction from the work exhibited. In turn, the overall direction of the design was one of balance, directing “straightforward and simple” typographic systems in collaboration with the unforgettable (and unmissable) use of bright green across the book – a homage to the statement yellow of the first book – resulting in a refreshing powerhouse of typographic consideration, masterful curation and editorial dexterity.

Using Instagram as their primary tool for contemporary typographic research, Brinkgerd and Laupichler look towards the role the social media platform plays for independent type designers. “For now we appreciate Instagram as a research tool and love to see how the design community has built their own bubble there,” they tell us, “the social platform has allowed us to connect with a lot of amazing designers,” firmly grounding their foundations in the independent typography scene. That being said, they are concerned with the growing limitations of Instagram, with the omnipresent algorithm along with Instagram’s constantly changing features and standards proving increasingly more difficult for smaller creatives on the platform. “Designers need to proactively search for certain things in order to discover them or to burst that trend-design bubble and discover new things,” they add, “it’s not ideal yet, but definitely a handy tool!”

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