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The custom fonts of Libération

Widely considered as the most graphically sophisticated French newspaper, Libération commissioned an exclusive typeface for its redesign in a bid to remain competitive and modern at a time when digital media is evolving. Production Type’s solution was a broadly expressive typographic palette that buttresses Libé’s position as a global news leader.

For the redesign of Libération, art directors Yorgo Tloupas and Javier Errea requested ultra-condensed, tall and flat-sided sans serifs that would be a match for the complex specifications of the new Libération: a wide palette of expressions across a set of weights and widths, a very dense texture and space efficiency, a stacking system, and an automatic underline system.

Overall, Libé Sans is a compact design, with a colossal lowercase. Where large x-heights are usually incorporated for small text readability, in Libé Sans it is conceived as a display feature. The family proves most functional at large sizes where horizontal space is scarce, thus forcing the letters to occupy any space allowed. That is why the collection encompasses three different condensed styles, but only one normal width and one extended width. The vertical proportions remain identical throughout all styles so they can be mixed within a line. The very short ascenders and descenders are specifically meant for tight line-fitting in lowercase, creating a dense texture in the newspaper’s page rhythm. What’s more, the “Stacked” accent system offers an alternative design for all-caps setting.

In 2015, Libération circulates 100,000 copies per day, its website attracts 4 million unique online visitors, and it also has a mobile app. The new typefaces serve all three media types.
  • Client

    Libération, 2015.

  • Agency

    Yorgo&Co., Errea Communication.

  • Awards

    D&AD Graphite Pencil Award 2016 Prix du Club des Directeurs Artistiques 2016 Typographica favorite 2015

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Useful type with an edge.

Useful type with an edge.

Production Type provide retail as well as dedicated creative services in typeface design for brands.

Based in Paris and Shanghai, Production Type is a digital type design agency. Its activities span from the exclusive online distribution of its retail type for design professionals, to the creation of custom typefaces for the industrial, luxury, and media sectors.
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