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Guide des chefs d’œuvre en péril by Pierre de Lagarde (Jean-Jacques Pauvert)

Contributed by Florian Hardwig on Oct 7th, 2013. Artwork published in .
Guide des chefs d’œuvre en péril by Pierre de Lagarde (Jean-Jacques Pauvert) 1
Source: Alexis Orloff. License: All Rights Reserved.

From Alexis Orloff’s Flickr photostream.

This “guide to masterpieces at risk” accompanied the French TV series of the same title, which dealt with safeguarding endangered cultural heritage sites in France. Chefs d’œuvre en péril was created and presented by Pierre de Lagarde and broadcast from 1962 to 1993.

The delicate fraktur letterforms on the cover are from Cölnisch Current Fraktur (also: Coellnisch-Current-Fraktur). Note the ligatures – not only the squiggly ‘ch’, but also the ‘de’. The apostrophe and the acute are too light and don’t quite fit the style.

Cölnisch Current Fraktur is a 16th century typeface by the Luthersche Gießerei in Frankfurt/Main. According to Albert Kapr, Christian Egenolff cast this font from borrowed matrices as early as in 1524. J.G.I. Breitkopf mentions that Egenolph [sic] possessed a typeface cut in brass, known as ‘Cöllnisch Current’ or ‘Deytsch Fractur’ – denoting its place of birth [Cologne] – which was recut for casting by his son-in-law, Jacob [Jacques] Sabon. See Johann Erasmus Luther’s 1678 specimen in Dan Reynolds’ article about the library of the Gutenberg Museum for ILT. A complete alphabet showing was first included in Jan Tschichold’s Meisterbuch der Schrift (1952). The punches then were in possession of the D. Stempel AG typefoundry.

Dieter Steffmann made a digital revival in 2000 (revised in 2008) and released the freebie as ‘Coelnische Current Fraktur’. The Walden Font Co. offers a ‘Coelnisch Current Fraktur WF’. This version is different, most notably in the dots on ‘i’ and ‘j’, and in that it has the ‘long s’ (ſ) as default.

Guide des chefs d’œuvre en péril by Pierre de Lagarde (Jean-Jacques Pauvert) 2
Source: License: All Rights Reserved.


  • Coelnisch Current Fraktur
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