Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Form is sometimes shaped more by space

The dynamic relationship between form and space is present across a number of different fields. In architecture, it is often how space is purposefully crafted that gives greater emphasis and poignancy to the solid form. In music, it has been said that we perceive music less by the inherent quality of the pitch or length of the notes themselves than by the character of the spaces between them. And so today walking along a ordinary San Francisco street the lesson was extended into the field of typography, or more specifically, kerning.

The Institute of Art on 3rd street took on altogether different and unintended meaning because of a lack of attention to the simple space-form interplay and in particular the failure to maintain a critical space between key letters. Had there been more space between the conjunction and school's core focus - the 'f' in 'of' and the 'A' in 'Art' - no abberation would have occured. As it stands, it humbles the respected field of arts, and leaves the viewer with the impression that something altogether different is a mission of this school, enough to leave a smirk on the face of the most hardened adult.

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