Type designer Kent Lew will present “Theme and Variations: Typeface Design as a Dialogue with History” at the final lecture of the Narrative and History of Art Lecture Series. The presentation, which is free and open to the public, will begin at 6 p.m. on Thursday, April 14, at the Minnesota Center for Book Arts, 1011 Washington Ave. S., Minneapolis.

Kent Lew

Kent Lew

What does it mean to be innovative in the realm of typeface design – where the essential forms (the shapes of our alphabet’s letters) have been more or less fixed for centuries? As a creative professional engaged in such a circumscribed craft, Lew will examine his field’s self-referential proclivities within a broader historical and cultural context, drawing parallels with other artistic disciplines, including music and painting. Reflecting on notions such as allusion, citation, transcription, revival, and homage, he will weave a narrative of type history’s recurrent efforts to marry past and present convincingly and to infuse old forms with new life.

For more information visit the Department of Art History.