Researching Posters – the work of Phillipe Apeloig

I’d say at the moment I’m particularly interested in Typography and feel its the area of graphic design which I would most like to work on/ experiment with. I really love looking at the interesting ways that fonts/ type is arranged and the methods to create Type whether by hand, digitally or phototypography.

I decided to have a close look at the poster designs of Phillipe Apeloig a graphic designer born in Paris who is well known for his poster designs many of which use his own custom typography.

Philippe Apeloig is a graphic designer born in Paris in November 1962. He is noted for his posters, many of which are in the collection of MoMA, and his typography, including the typefaces Octobre and Drop.

He worked as a designer for Musée d’Orsay in Paris from 1985 to 1987 and in 1988 received a grant from the French Foreign Ministry to work in Los Angeles with April Greiman. He was later honoured with a research and residency grant at the French Academy of Art in the Villa Medici in Rome and has taught typography and graphic design at the École Nationale Supérieure des Arts Décoratifs in Paris from 1992 to 1999, and the Cooper Union School of Art in New York City from 1999 to 2002.


I like Chicago image above as your eye is drawn through the image. The black and white grainy image alone isn’t much to look at but the unusual angle of the shot with the Type looks really sophisticated and the Type wraps round at off the page which is really interesting.

The Type Directors Club 2014 Philippe Apeloig’s Typograma [Online] [Accessed 2nd May 2014]





I really love his Poster design . In the poster above which was for a designer exhibition on posters. The names of participating designers are printed on nine mini posters within the large sheet, their edges turned over to reveal brightly colored reverse sides. Only when viewed from a distance does the game reveal itself. The mini posters in fact form letters spelling out two words, “the poster.”

I think this is really clever and I must admit until I read the review I wasn’t even aware that the names on “THE POSTER” which make up the letters were there or in fact represented the names of the works featured in the exhibition. Its simple and bold and really clever.



Design boom 2014 Philippe Apeloig [Accessed 10th May 2014]

The choice of type/or the type he designed for the posters above is totally suitable for the job in each poster. The colour choice of the African one is appropriate without being a cliche and the block lettering is very suitable. The black and yellow type one reminds me of a neon sign/ lights and I like how it almost plays a trick on your eyes with the use of the two tone colour combinations and how when viewed initially the yellow jumps on at you but then you notice it makes up words.

Font shop Experimental Modernist – Story by Peter Hall [Accessed April 2014]

I read a few interviews with him and some pointers are stated below.

He does not refuse to use typefaces but likes the use of perfect type.

He feels letters should introduce a subtle, expressive element. they must also project analogies, or serve as metaphors, for technique, functionality, and art.

His decision—whether or not to use an official ‘house’ type or invent one of my own—depends on the expectations of the target audience and the design project. When he makes a new font the design of the letters and characters on a certain poster need to be part of the overall concept / design of the poster. He tries to balance eligibility with creating something complex into a refined visual solution.




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