Paper by Martin L. Demaine

Erik D. Demaine and Martin L. Demaine, “More than Words: Fonts as Generative Art”, in Proceedings of the 24th Generative Art Conference (GA 2021), Sardinia, Italy, December 15–17, 2021, pages 369–378.

Artistic fonts offer a way to transform any text into an art print, interactive software, or animation. Thus we can view artistic fonts as a form of generative art: whereas most generative art is determined by an initial random seed, with fonts the “seed” is arbitrary text. An advantage of this approach is that the resulting print can encode one or more messages. With puzzle fonts, where the letters are encoded but not explicit in the glyphs, this message can be hidden within the resulting artwork.

We demonstrate this approach to generative art using a series of mathematical and puzzle fonts we have designed over the years, which are available as free interactive web apps from

Figure 1 and Figure 2 show two examples of art prints designed with two of our fonts: one font that reveals itself when folding translucent paper in half and another based on glass cane from the art of glass blowing.

This paper is also available from the electronic proceedings.

The talk is available on YouTube.

The paper is 10 pages.

The paper is available in PDF (3028k).
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Related webpages:
Mathematical and Puzzle Fonts/Typefaces

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Last updated by Martin Demaine.