Ruedi Baur: Architectural and Urban Inscriptions

Type Directors Club and Parsons Present Evening with Noted Designer on Occasion of First U.S. Commission -- a Wayfinding System for the University Center at The New School

Ruedi Baur Typeface for The New School
New Typeface for the University Center at The New School, Intégral Ruedi Baur, 2014
Ruedi Baur: Architectural and Urban Inscriptions
Thursday, November 21, 6:30 – 8: 30 p.m.
Wollman Hall, The New School
65 West 11th Street, New York
TDC members $5; Non-members $20 Students $15

NEW YORK, November 7, 2013—The Type Directors Club and Parsons The New School for Design present Ruedi Baur: Architectural and Urban Inscriptions, a presentation by this leading European designer on the occasion of his first major U.S. commission, a wayfinding system for The New School’s University Center, a new campus center designed by Skidmore, Owings & Merrill that will open in January 2014.

Baur will present his approach to the question of orientation and identification of public institutions. He will share his thoughts about information design in a society dominated by commercial signs. He will discuss, based on examples, the necessary synergy between designers, architects, landscape architects and lighting designers to create a city that goes beyond functionality to improve the quality of life for everyone.

Baur will be introduced by Tim Marshall, Provost of The New School, who will speak briefly about the university’s commissioning of Baur and his studio, Intégral Paris, for this landmark project. The firm designed a three-dimensional typeface to work in superposition in the stairwells, which are visible from the street, playing on perspective to indicate a direction or floor level within the building. A custom typeface was created to meet the two-dimensional and three-dimensional requirements, and is inspired by the faceted façade of this significant new work of architecture. The typeface’s perspective evolves with each story of the building, its effect intensifying as it moves from the ground floor to the 17th floor.

“3D typography is not a novelty,” says Baur. “It predates Gutenberg to ancient civilizations that engraved lettering onto blocks of stone. Our design is a contemporary approach to this Greek tradition. The typeface was loosely based on Gotham, then integrated Peter Bilak’s Irma font, superposing Irma Light on Irma Black to create the contoured overlap that produces the three-dimensional perspective effect."

The design concept was also adapted for a newly established academic center for Parsons Paris, which opened this fall in the 1st Arrondissement in a more classic, Haussmann-era building.

About Intégral Ruedi Baur
Ruedi Baur is a celebrated Franco-Swiss graphic designer with studios in Paris and Zurich, who has received significant acclaim for his work, which includes design projects for major Parisian art institutions including the Picasso Museum, the Louvre and the Pompidou Center. Baur designed the complete wayfinding and identification system for the Pompidou Center’s reopening in 2000. During this period, his work became more specifically focused on architecture and urban development, bringing these fields more closely together through interventions in the identification, orientation and scenography of institutions and their political territory. Baur developed a multidisciplinary practice, creating the Intégral network of studios, including Intégral Ruedi Baur, Paris (founded in 1989), Intégral Ruedi Baur, Zurich (founded in 2002), the IRB Laboratory for visual experimentation (founded in 2007 with Denis Coueignoux), the Institute of Research in Design Civic City (founded in 2011 with Vera Baur-Kockot and Imke Plinta), and the Heterotopia Institute in Essen, Germany. A member of the Alliance Graphique Internationale since 1992, he participates in many workshops and judging panels and lectures regularly. Baur’s writings have been published in various countries and his works have been presented in a number of exhibitions. For more information, visit

About the University Center at The New School
Over the past two decades, The New School has built on its nearly century-long legacy of creativity and innovation to become a major degree-granting university led by design and social research, with nearly 10,000 undergraduate and graduate students. The New School’s new University Center in New York’s Greenwich Village responds to this evolution by creating a critical focal point for the campus and surrounding neighborhood. Described as “a celebration of the cosmopolitan city” by The New York Times, the center is the embodiment of The New School mission of socially engaged education. When it officially opens in January 2014, the University Center will add 375,000 square feet of academic and student space on 16 stories, with state-of-the-art classrooms, design studios and science labs, a student dormitory, a library, cafeteria, an 800-seat auditorium, and other amenities. For more information, visit

About the Type Directors Club
The Type Directors Club is the leading international organization whose purpose is to support excellence in typography, both in print and on screen. Through our annual competition and exhibition and frequent salons and workshops, we hope to celebrate the current stars of the typographic field and educate its future leaders. For more information, visit

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