Edible Typography

Design, Teaching

I was teaching at the Art Institute of New York City in the fall of 2010, and I had one Type 1 class which was struggling mightily, about to fail en masse. Luckily, I discovered most of them had been culinary students in the school’s earlier incarnation. I asked them to bring in a letter of their choice, as long as they made it themselves out of something sweet. The results were wildly varied in terms of edibility, but their collective enthusiasm and level of dialogue skyrocketed for the rest of the term. Of course, this is technically edible lettering, but at least I got their blood pumping!

It opened my eyes and I make a point of interviewing my classes on the first day to look for clues of their prior knowledge. It keeps me on my toes, giving me a chance to enliven the material all over again.


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Libby Clarke is an artist, designer, and educator living in Maplewood, NJ. She received her BFA in Printmaking from James Madison University and her MFA in 2D Design from Cranbrook Academy of Art. Professionally, Libby has worked as an interaction art director for over 15 years for such companies as Agency.com and Scholastic.com. She was an Assistant Professor at the New York College of Technology in Brooklyn, New York. She also served as the Director of the Studio School of the Visual Arts Center of New Jersey. As an artist, Libby has produced a series of multi-media conceptual products under the name Monstress Productions since 1996. She gives workshops and lectures across the United States on the intersection of art, activism, and technology, and her pieces are exhibited and collected internationally.