Typ.ologies: Reframing Ireland’s vernacular letterform through the lens of heritage





Since the late 1800s, vernacular letterforms have been vital components of the traditional shopfronts of Ireland, enlivening, place-making, and inspiring dialogue with streetscapes. The National Inventory of Architectural Heritage identifies, records, and evaluates Ireland’s post-1700 architectural heritage. While the state initiative appraises architecturally significant shopfronts, it typically overlooks the critical signage element. This research aims to bridge this gap by documenting, mapping, and interpreting the existing vernacular letterforms in Kilkenny as a paradigm. Through the lens of heritage, the study seeks to construct a case for preserving, promoting, and advocating for vernacular letterforms and the traditional craft of signwriting. Signwriting straddles art, craft, and design dissolving creative hierarchies yet remains academically underexplored. Raising awareness and advancing the craft’s criticality may influence local and national policy. With the current economic climate threatening to permanently alter Ireland’s typographic landscapes, academic scrutiny of this rich graphic heritage has never been more crucial.



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Biografia do Autor

Dee Maher Ring, Technological University Dublin

Dee Maher Ring is an Irish Research Council postgraduate scholar at Technological University Dublin's Graduate School of Creative Arts and Media (GradCAM), working on her project titled, Towards a methodology for documenting Ireland's visual graphic heritage of vernacular shopfront lettering: A case study of Kilkenny Signwriting. She is the recipient of the Irish Georgian Society’s Desmond Guinness Scholarship 2022. Her research intersects design, craft, and heritage. She has presented at the Typography Ireland: Building Ligatures Seminar (2022), Irish Humanities Alliance "Streets Ahead" Conference (2022) and the Design History Society "Displaying Design: History, Criticism, and Curatorial Discourses" Annual Conference (2023). She holds a Masters in Design, Higher Diploma in Arts, and Bachelor of Arts in Visual Communications, and was formerly a college Design Lecturer in Scotland.




Como Citar

Maher Ring, D. (2023). Typ.ologies: Reframing Ireland’s vernacular letterform through the lens of heritage. InfoDesign - Revista Brasileira De Design Da Informação, 20(2). https://doi.org/10.51358/id.v20i2.1095