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Adrian Frutiger’s homage to Futura® (avenir is the French word for future) was made with such care and consideration. It almost disqualifies itself from a genre dominated by more rugged geometric sanses. Avenir Next is the 2004 collaboration between Linotype Type Director Akira Kobayashi and Frutiger himself. Available in Eastern and Pan-European variants.
Mark Simonson’s extensively developed Proxima Nova falls somewhere on the line between geometric and grotesk, formally speaking. In practice it handles surprisingly like an American gothic, with an exotic feel. Three widths with eight weights each, full Pan-European support.
FF Bauer Grotesk softens the hard geometry of many of its contemporaries, introducing a subtle sense of art deco design to its forms. The family also has a calmer and more classical tone overall, thanks in large part to its relatively low x-height. Six weights in all.
Fabrikat is a perfect example of the straight-sided geometric sans. Compact and workmanlike, the design evokes an air of industrial tradesmen going about their business. Not merely a nostalgia piece, Fabrikat is suited to a broad range of contemporary work, including editorial and general display. The family comes in seven complete weights from Hairline to Black.
What discussion of geometric sanses would be complete without Paul Renner’s archetypal 1927 design, Futura? This is the typeface that sets the genre in motion. The Neufville Digital version has the cleanest pedigree of existing Futura digitizations, and Neufville in Barcelona is a direct partner with the original publisher, Bauer Type Foundry in Frankfurt am Main.
Ivo Gabrowitsch’s fontlist doesn’t try to exhaustively catalogue every geometric sans subgenre, but instead hits the highlights with the best examples of each, and includes lots of interesting crossovers.
Trademark attribution notice FontShop is a trademark of Monotype GmbH and may be registered in certain jurisdictions. Avenir is a trademark of Monotype GmbH registered in the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office and may be registered in certain other jurisdictions. Bauer Grotesk is a trademark of Monotype GmbH and may be registered in certain jurisdictions. FF is a trademark of Monotype GmbH registered in the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office and may be registered in certain other jurisdictions. Futura is a registered Trademark of Bauer Types. All other trademarks are property of their respective owners.