|Of Thomas Christensen, ABCedminded Typesetter|
Compared to Futura, the x-height and the aperture are bigger. Whereas V shapes (A, M, N, V, W, etc.) are pointed in Futura, they are squared off in Avenir.The j and y have curved rather than straight tails; the Q has a horizontal tail. Unlike Futura's ball and stick a, the Avenir a is more conventional-and more legible.
Designed by Adrian Frutiger and released by Linotype-Hell AG in 1988. The design is based on Erbar and Futura. Compared to Futura, the x-height and the aperture are bigger.
A popular brand identity font used by the web search engine AltaVista, the Dallas-Fort Worth Airport, and Blue Cross/Blue Shield, among others.
back on more than 40 years of concern with sans serif typefaces, I felt
an obligation to design a linear style of sans serif, in the tradition
of Erbar, Futura, and to a lesser extent Gill Sans. These have purely
constructed characters from which the element of a handwriting movement
has been removed. Obviously this could not be an outstanding new creation,
but I have tried to make use of the experience and stylistic developments
of the 20th century in order to work out an independent alphabet meeting
modern typographical needs. Even though Avenir can be classified
as a constructivist typeface, it does not have a purely geometric and
linear drawing. The vertical stroke lengths have been reduced in order
to make text setting more legible, on the well-established grounds that
the human eye takes in horizontals more easily than verticals and tends
to grasp the meaning of a line in a horizontal sweep.... Avenir is intended
to be nothing more nor less than a clear and clean representation of
modern typographical trends, giving the designer a typeface which is
strictly modern and at the same time humane, ie suitable refined and
elegant for use in texts of any length."