Jan Abellan


Jan Abellan

'Grischa Lumnezia'

Graphic Design

Jury report

Tradition Meets Innovation
As the basis for his bach­e­lor's de­gree pro­ject at the ECAL, Jan Abel­lan chose the wood­cut­ting method used in the tra­di­tional tim­ber join­ery ar­chi­tec­ture of the Val Lum­nezia in Graubünden. From it, he de­vel­oped a type­face spe­cially tai­lored to con­tem­po­rary alpine ar­chi­tec­ture.
In his first ex­per­i­ments with wood, the young graphic artist used the orig­i­nal tools - a chisel and a ham­mer. Whilst the shapes of the in­di­vid­ual let­ters are de­rived from the tra­di­tional wood­cut­ting process, what they re­flect above all is the rough moun­tain cli­mate. The re­sult is a type­face that in­trudes into the three-di­men­sional world. Changes in the light alter the let­ters, ex­pos­ing their whole form. The let­ters change with the weather and the time of day.
Jan Abel­lan's field of ex­per­i­men­ta­tion is the cre­ation of let­ters that, rather than being de­fined purely by their line thick­ness and serif, can re­spond to the world around them. With the help of a dig­i­tal 3D pro­gram, he has de­vel­oped a mo­bile sys­tem of let­ter­ing that per­mits let­ters to be set into con­crete façades. In the tra­di­tional wood­cut­ting method, the thick­ness of the line de­pends on the depth of the cut; here, the breadth of the shadow, which af­fects the leg­i­bil­ity of the let­ter, varies de­pend­ing on the de­gree of re­cess. With an in­spired mix­ture of in­no­va­tion and tra­di­tion, Jan Abel­lan has brought a dif­fi­cult and star­tling ex­per­i­ment to a suc­cess­ful con­clu­sion. We look for­ward to see­ing his in­scrip­tions used in Val Lum­nezia.


Jan Abellan
Born in
Graphic Designer