Tÿpo St. Gallen—Recap
What nobody talks about.
The three-day typography symposium Tÿpo St. Gallen 2023 took place for the 7th time at GBS St. Gallen, focusing on the conference theme What nobody talks about. From November 10th to 12th, 2023, distinguished speakers gave an insight into their day-to-day work and talked about everything we don’t usually talk about. In lectures, we learned about fails and fuck-ups, criticism and shitstorms, doubts, money, and also got the chance to get creative in workshops.
The Tÿpo St. Gallen program this year offered a diverse lineup with around 20 expert speakers from Switzerland, Germany, Austria, France, the Netherlands, and Korea. With their moderation, Anne Treichel and Clemens Schedler guided us through the conference. Friday kicked off with engaging presentations from the graphic design duo Balmer Hählen from Lausanne, who gave insights into their high-quality produced print products, and Alexandre Dimos, publisher of Editions B42, from France. Ulrike Rausch then shared her insights into the technical reproduction of handwriting in her presentation. This was followed by four very inspiring short lectures by Christine Rudi, Sabrina Öttl, Data-Orbit, and Madeleine Stahel, Maike Hamacher from Büro 146. Finally, the two communication designers Matthias Frey and Tim Siegert from the German agency Q gave an honest insight into the lows of their agency history: devastating feedback and alleged plagiarism—things that agencies don’t like to talk about. The first day ended with the Typobiography book launch and Jost Hochuli’s 90th birthday party.
Saturday opened with Ladina Ingold and Katharina Scheller diving into the field of sustainable design and the influence designers can have on sustainable print production through their decision-making and well-considered choice of materials. Following this insightful session, Tÿpo attendees had the chance to choose from 13 diverse workshops presented through elevator pitches. Covering topics as wide ranging as clay modeling, poster and type design, short coaching, typeknitting ... a good opportunity to exchange ideas and get creative with the other participants.
In the afternoon, Jianping He gave insights into his work as a designer and showed, how his Chinese background and culture influence him. This lecture was followed by Korean design journalist Kay Jun and graphic designer and artist Guido de Boer from the Netherlands. Sarah Owens, professor at the Zurich University of Applied Sciences, gave an expert look into her research on everyday design, a presentation that was engaging without any visual slides. Lilia Glanzmann, co-director of the Zeughaus Teufen, also impressed with her lecture program. The grand finale was a captivating presentation by Liza Enebeis, partner and creative director at Studio Dumbar/DEPT, who presented a collection of captivating motion design projects from the internationally recognized agency.
On Sunday, the finissage of the most beautiful books from Switzerland, Germany, and Austria concluded the event at the Hauspost library.
Thank you for having us—we had a highly inspiring time at Tÿpo St. Gallen and are already looking forward to the next round in 2025.