A Collection of Wonderful Readable Art


Maybe it’s the fact that we moonlight as book nerds, but to us, there’s something singularly compelling about art that incorporates the written word. Maybe it’s because we so often see and use words as purely utilitarian, and it’s satisfying to see them in a representative, artistic sense — or maybe it’s just because we’re suckers for pretty typography in all its forms. Either way, we feel like we’ve been seeing an abnormal amount of text-based art in the past few months, so we were inspired to put together a little roundup of some of our favorite works in the genre, from old to new, from slapdash paintings to meticulously cut paper works. Click through to peruse our completely incomplete collection of typographical art we love, and be sure to add to our collection in the comments.

From Jenny Holzer‘s Projections series, Paris, 2009.

Sean Landers, Thought Bubble, 1994

Lee Jung, How Could You Do This To Me 2, from the series Aporia

In Order to Control, an interactive experience where viewers cast a shadow in type, by Nota Bene.

Lora Fosberg, Thank You For Everything, 2008.

Fiona Banner, Heart of Darkness, 2012

Installation by typographical street artist Greg Papagrigoriou.

Annie Vought, I am Crossing an Ocean, With 2 Others On a Piece Of Paper, 2012.

Christine Wong Yap, Unlimited Promise, 2009/2010.

Daniel Patrick Helmstetter, Danny’s Continental Cocktail Lounge, 2010.

Mel Bochner, Amazing, 2008.

From the Art as Idea as Idea series, by Joseph Kosuth, 1966.

Fiona Banner, The Bastard Punctuation, 2006-07.

Pam Steele, “Think About It.”

Fred Eerdekens’ shadow typography.

Gregory Fong, Forget What You Know, 2008.

The classic: John Baldessari’s I Will Not Make Any More Boring Art, 1971