Stamen is the answer to a big question: What would happen if one tried to create a typeface that was ‘out of time’? If a type designer was to turn off the internet and put away the type specimens and just try to explore limbic, phantom history, what might that look like?
No slavish explorations of the past. No gropings toward the future. No exhaustive core sample of the contemporary. Instead, using what one remembers of history and our collective vision of the future (usually a future imagined from the past) and channeling that into something that is, hopefully, new… The Bentons meet Frutiger for a Manhattan on a space station while Matthew Carter sways to the sweet sounds of the chorale that occasionally played through the halls of Stephenson Blake.
This smear of implicit history expressed without explicit reference—this is Stamen: a family of 12 typefaces with a ton of alternate characters.
The bold weight was designed for the LP “I Thought the Future Would Be Cooler” (http://ittfwbc.com/) by the band YACHT in response to their request for a typeface that was ‘lost in time’, and refers to neither strict historical models nor purely futuristic forms.