Hidden Figures

August 2017

Athelas in use in the USA movie Hidden Figures.



As type designers we cannot control where and how our typefaces are used. That decision is made by graphic designers, or users in general, and sometimes we have found our fonts in situations we could not have imagined.

When José Scaglione designed Athelas as a typeface to be used in continuous texts, preferably in print, he could not envision that Athelas would end up being part of the MacOS system, as one of the typefaces of their ibook app, that readers all around the world can use, for instance, to read the news on their phones. And he could not have dreamt of Athelas becoming a Hollywood star. That is exactly what happened in the movie Hidden Figures, the story of a team of female African-American mathematicians who served at NASA in the 1960s. The cast includes Taraji P. Henson, Octavia Spencer, Janelle Monáe, Kevin Costner, Kirsten Dunst and Jim Parsons, and of course, Athelas.

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