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Hermann Zapf,  (1918–2015)

Goudy Award Winner 1, 1969

The first Frederic W. Goudy Award is being presented, fittingly, to a man whose great reputation lies in the field of type design. Hermann Zapf, of Frankfurt, Germany, is in the same tradition as Frederic W. Goudy, (1865–1947) who brought so much distinction to the craft of designing printer's types.

Mr. Zapf, born in 1918, first became interested in the Structure of letter, forms in 1935 when he became acquainted with the calligraphy of Rudolf Koch. Without formal art training, he studied the work of the great printers of past generations, and after a few months with the printing office of Paul Koch, he became a freelance book designer.

At the age of twenty Mr. Zapf was already engaged in the production of his first type, Gilgengart, which was issued in 1940. Since that time he has produced over sixty types plus decorative material. Many of these designs have become familiar to printers throughout the world, and are in everyday use for a broad range of printing. Palatino, Melior, Optima, Sistina and Michelangelo are some of the Zapf types which have attained the popularity accorded several of the Goudy types forty years ago, such as Goudy Oldstyle, Kennerly, Forum, and Goudy Modern.

Mr. Zapf is also active in writing, having produced several books which are examples of fine printing in addition to being excellent texts on the subject of typography. As a lecturer he has appeared before numerous graphic arts organizations in Europe and the United States, including a term as Visiting Professor at Carnegie-Mellon University. He has also lectured at Harvard, Yale, and Princeton and other American colleges. In 1966 he received the gold medal of the Type Directors Club of New York for excellence in typography.

In the photograph from L to R: Alexander S. Lawson and Hermann Zapf