Typeface Talk: Monotype Wolpe cover project

Faber Design were recently asked by Monotype to contribute to a landmark Wolpe exhibition.

With a brief to redesign some Faber book covers from the archive, using the newly designed Wolpe typefaces from Monotype, the Faber team – with only a few hours to tackle the covers – have developed some designs utilising Fanfare (Sir Winston Churchill), Sachsenwald (The Balcony) and Pegasus (The Mind and Work of Paul Klee, and The Hawk in the Rain). 


Using largely typographic solutions in order to show off the key characteristics of the typefaces at display size, each designer chose a different face before matching it to a title.

The designer of Sir Winston Churchill played with the elongated and condensed curves of the Fanfare to represent smoke, above a glowing emblematic cigar formed from an alternative glyph of the capital I, to playfully evoke the presence of the political leader. 

Sachsenwald communicates a sense of history and gravitas common to many blackletters which the designer of The Balcony wanted to undermine. Genet’s scandalous play about the relationship between authority and artifice seemed to offer the perfect opportunity to test the versatility of the typeface.



The Mind and Work of Paul Klee, and The Hawk in the Rain, with their short words and prominent use of the letter K, allowed the designer to show off some of the distinctive and elegant characteristics oPegasus at a large size. The serif of the top stroke of the was echoed in the marks scattered across The Hawk in the Rain, which could represent rain, or the beaks or even claw marks of the eponymous hawk. 

Featuring mark-making reminiscent of the work of the artist in The Mind and Work of Paul Klee – the non-solid title still retains the distinctive characteristics of the Pegasus letterforms – indicative of the strength of the special earmarks of this typeface.

Wolpe’s typefaces pop up all around London, from the streets of Lambeth, to Van-Gogh-inspired benches in Stockwell, to a hidden underground river that snakes through the city before joining the Thames. If you’re not a Londoner, you can also look out for the distinctive font on screen.

Our designs are now on display at the exhibition alongside a wealth of Wolpe’s sketches, covers, posters and much more.

Hosted by The Type Archive, its a truly wonderful showcase and is just 10mins walk from
Stockwell Tube. Entrance is free but you’ll need to pre-book.