TYPOTOPO is a collection of works loosely themed around typography, virtual spaces, and technology. Digital technology can allow for new ways to express visual—and textual—messages. “Craft” plays an important role in our digitally-mediated world. Through the experiments on this site, I am exploring how “craft” can apply to software artifacts, interactive systems, and other works created using the computer.

Design, visual thinking and technology can work together to make information accessible. What does it mean to create maps of information spaces? If Borges’ fable of the one-to-one sized map of an imaginary kingdom has become true in the age of the Internet, the role of the map as an all-encompassing tool for representing the entirety of a region needs to change. TYPOTOPO explores how new kinds of maps can make sense of the data overload, maps which narrativize and personalize the journey.

The work here also stems from my long-time fascination with letters. These building blocks of written communication hold power as symbols that are at once representational and abstract. What are the secret lives of letters, and how can those lives be revealed? From an early age we learn to write letterforms in our own hand and recognize mechanically produced typeforms as the same symbols. When the keyboard replaces the pen as the writer’s primary tool, we lose the visceral connection to the continuous handwritten mark in favor of the efficiency of digital reproduction. The relationship between the handwritten and the machine-made is one theme explored here. In addition, the mechanically-produced visible word can evoke an expressiveness and life all its own.

Finally, TYPOTOPO is a typographic playground. Through these experiments, I would like to suggest that digital media can lead to delightful, playful works and experiences.
 


Nutexts

Paik studies

VisArts

New Year 2003