Kanji Graphy. Typographische Begegnungen zwischen Japan und dem Westen
Japanese is said to be one of the most complex writing systems of the world, if not THE most complicated one, as Basil Hall Chamberlain claimed it 125 years ago. Indeed the Japanese writing system unites four scripts – Kanji, Hiragana, Katakana, Latin letters – of three different origins – China, Japan and Europe– to a unique hybrid system in which each script has it’s own part.
This publication is devoted to the Japanese writing system, it’s history, structure and richness of visual expression. Comparisons of the Japanese script to Latin letters are there to support the reader. More than hundred typographic designs of the past to the present – accompanied by analytical descriptions in text and visuals – demonstrate an insight to the opportunities of this hybrid system, beyond a beautiful facade to the deeper semantic layer.