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Gudrun Zapf von Hesse papers

 Collection
Identifier: CSC-0134

Scope and Contents

The Gudrun Zapf von Hesse papers contain materials from 1934 to 2019, with the bulk of the papers dated between 1936 and 1998.

This collection contains materials related to Gudrun Zapf von Hesse’s professional career as a bookbinder, calligrapher, and typographer. Materials include correspondence, speeches, printed material, photographic material, administrative materials, digital material, and realia.

The Gudrun Zapf von Hesse papers have been arranged into three series, two of which have been divided into subseries. This collection is housed in 1 archival document box, 1 oversize box, and 1 flat file drawer.

Dates

  • 1934 - 2019
  • Majority of material found within 1936 - 1998

Creator

Conditions Governing Access

Access to realia (the bone folder) is at the discretion of the archivist and curator as it is fragile.

Conditions Governing Use

This collection is open to researchers.

Conditions Governing Reproduction and Use

Copyright restrictions may apply. Please contact Dr. Steven Galbraith at skgtwc@rit.edu for access inquiries.

Biographical Note

“In my opinion, the best foundation for creating new alphabets is an intensive study of calligraphy.”

- Gudrun Zapf von Hesse

Gudrun Zapf von Hesse was born on January 2, 1918. She served a bookbinding apprenticeship with Otto Dorfner, finishing with a Master’s Diploma in 1940 after which she pursued an independent course of studies on calligraphy and letterforms, concentrating on the work of Rudolf Koch and Edward Johnston. After World War II, she opened her own book bindery, and learned punchcutting at the Bauer type foundry in Frankfurt, with the support of Georg Hartmann.

From 1946 to 1954, von Hesse taught lettering at the Städelschule in Frankfurt. After attracting notice at an exhibition of calligraphy, she was commissioned by the Stempel foundry in Frankfurt to design typefaces, and went on to a successful career as a typographer with Stempel. She married Hermann Zapf, Stempel’s art director and prolific typeface designer, on August 1, 1951.

In 1991, Hesse was the second woman to receive the prestigious Frederic W. Goudy award, given by the Rochester Institute of Technology in New York. In 2001, she was recognized with a Lifetime Achievement Award from the Friends of Calligraphy. She turned 100 in January 2018, whereupon Monotype released the titling typeface Hesse-Antiqua to mark the occasion:

“Gudrun Zapf von Hesse… is a woman of many talents: She would emphasize that she is a trained bookbinder first, but she was also active as a lettering artist, she has produced work in the graphic arts – and she is a typeface designer. As she turns 100 on this day, her first alphabet design is finally released after 70 years.” (https://www.fontshop.com/content/hesse-antiqua)

Hesse-Antiqua (2018, Monotype, with Ferdinand Ulrich) joined von Hesse’s other notable typefaces which include Christiana (Berthold), Diotima (Stempel), Nofret (Berthold), Shakespeare (Hallmark), and Smaragd (Stempel).

[Adapted from Wikipedia (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gudrun_Zapf-von_Hesse#Career), edited by Nicole Pease]

Extent

2 Linear Feet (1 box, 1 oversize box) : Collection materials are stored in the Cary Collection stacks, range 17A (box 1) with oversize materials stored in the Graphic Design Archives cage range 10A, shelf 10A-31 (box 2). Flat file materials are in the Cary Collection stacks flat file case 4.

Language

English

Overview

The Gudrun Zapf von Hesse papers document von Hesse’s professional career as a bookbinder, calligrapher, and typographer in the 20th and 21st centuries.

System of Arrangement

Series I. Professional work, 1936-1998

Subseries A. Bookbinding, 1937-1957
Subseries B. Calligraphy, 1936-1998
Subseries C. Typography, 1952-2019

Series II. References, 1934-2018

Subseries A. Realia, undated

Series III. Digital files, 2010-2019

Physical Location

Collection materials are stored in the Cary Collection stacks, range 17A (box 1) with oversize materials stored in the Graphic Design Archives cage range 10A, shelf 10A-31 (box 2). Flat file materials are in the Cary Collection stacks flat file case 4.

Custodial History

The Gudrun Zapf von Hesse papers were donated in 1991 and 2007.

Related Materials - books and Manuscripts

Books and manuscripts referenced by this document and listed below are housed in the Cary Collection and can be found here: https://albert.rit.edu/search~S3

Gudrun Zapf von Hesse: bindings, handwritten books, typefaces, examples of lettering and drawings. West New York, NJ: Mark Batty, 2002

Related Collections

For related collections, use the links below or visit the RIT library catalog at https://albert.rit.edu/search~S3.

Related collections in ArchivesSpace

Frederic W. Goudy Award collection and Symposium videotapes (RITArc-0283)
https://twcarchivesspace.rit.edu/repositories/2/resources/280
Hermann Zapf collection (CSC-0135)
https://twcarchivesspace.rit.edu/repositories/3/resources/1133
Hermann Zapf Collection at Herzog August Bibliotek (Wulfenbüttel, Germany)
www.hab.de/de/home/bibliothek/bestaende/sondersammlungen/sammlung-hermann-zapf.html

Processing Information

Processed by Nicole Pease, April 2019; finding aid by Nicole Pease, April 2019.
Title
Gudrun Zapf von Hesse papers
Subtitle
RIT Cary Graphic Arts Collection, Rochester Institute of Technology
Status
Published
Author
Nicole R. Pease
Date
April 2019
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Undetermined
Script of description
Code for undetermined script
Language of description note
English
Sponsor
The processing of this collection was made possible by a generous grant from the Gladys Krieble Delmas Foundation.

Repository Details

Part of the Cary Graphic Arts Collection Repository

Contact:
RIT Libraries
The Wallace Center
90 Lomb Memorial Drive
Rochester NY 14623 US
(585) 475-2408