Albert-Jan PoolCritics, Speakers, 2017
Albert-Jan Pool was born in Amsterdam on the 9th of July 1960. After studying at the KABK in The Hague with Gerrit Noordzij, he left for Hamburg in 1987 and worked with Scangraphic and URW. Since 1994 he runs his studio Dutch Design and designs typefaces such as FF OCR-F and FF DIN as well as corporate typefaces for well known brands like C&A, JET and HEM. Together with type-consultant Stefan Rögener he wrote the both useful and provocative book ‘Branding with Type’ in 1995. He teaches typeface design at the Muthesius Academy in Kiel. From 1999 to 2005 he ran the design agency FarbTon Konzept + Design.
In 2004 he started researching on the history of the typefaces according to DIN 1451 and has become a well known author and speaker on this subject. By 2008 he decided to support his findings scientifically and started working on his doctoral thesis on the history of geometric sans serif typefaces in Germany. His thesis is being tutorized by prof. Gerard Unger in Leiden (NL). In 2011 the New York Museum of Modern Art decided to extend its collection of applied arts by digital typefaces. FF DIN was amongst the first set of 23 typefaces. Albert-Jan Pool considers this acquisition as a milestone in the process of the recognition of typeface design as a form of applied art next to architecture and industrial design. Working on new weights and styles to extend his typeface family FF DIN has become one of his major occupations, in 2010 the release of the long awaited FF DIN Round turned FF DIN into a so called super-family and in 2015 FF DIN Thin and Extra Light were released.
Albert-Jan Pool is a member of ATypI (1985), AGD (2001), TDC (2001), Forum Typografie (2005) and is the chairman of the German standards committee on typefaces at the DIN Institute in Berlin. The first task of this new committee was to revise DIN 1450, the German norm dealing with legibility of typefaces and typography. DIN 1450 was re-released in 2013. Recently he rediscovered his interest in yet another ‘German’ style of scripts: Fraktur. Together with his friends Drury Brennan, Marleen Krallman and Petra Rüth he launched the Breaking Good workshops which are focussed on both historical and contemporary aspects of broken scripts.