Tipo Cibo Vino (Legacy of Letters 2019)—Part 6: Letterpress Workshop Day 2

The letterpress project was a bound book (though we failed to get the binding done while at the Tipoteca) composed of designs for each course of an Italian meal: aperitivi (Shaina Pruden), antipasti (Jason Stadnik), vini (Janine Wong), primi piatti (Emmy Yamaguchi), secondi piatti (Lucia McCreery), contorni e insalate (Lucille Tenazas), formaggio (James Stroud), dolci (Jane Pirone), caffè (Claire Lukacs), and digestivi (Laura Thoms). The endpapers were designed by Sayre Gaydos who also came up with the book structure. The cover, title page (menu), and colophon (ingredients) were designed by me with input from Patricia Childers—and Patricia carried out the typesetting with last-minute help from Sandro Berra, Lucio Botoselle, and Daniele Facchin. The latter two are the “technicians” who assist us at the Tipoteca.

Each participant was required to set a list of items within their course (e.g. names of wines for vini) at text size using metal type on the back of their sheet of paper. The list was printed in black. That portion of the paper was later folded so that the list appeared on the front. On the front of their sheet of paper they were free to interpret their course using wood and metal type as well as illustrations in multiple colors. The page structure that Sayre created allowed the participants to have room to be creative while keeping the final size of the project small so that it would be easy to carry back home.

We originally intended to print in only three colors, but somehow ended up doing six. Although we used a Pantone book for reference, the colors were mixed by eye by Peter Kruty. In keeping with the Tipo Cibo Vino theme we gave them food and drink names: squid ink (black), anchovy (silver), prosecco (pale yellow), olive (green), Aperol spritz (orange), and carpaccio (red).

July 9, 2019 | Day 1 of the Project

James and Janine setting type.

Peter showing Lucille, Shaina, and Jason how to move type from the composing stick to the galley tray.

Janine’s list of cheeses from the tasting at Latteria Perenzin as contents for James’ formaggio course.

Janine’s first draft for her vini list using wines from our visits to Cantina Marchiori and Cantina Loredan Gasparini. Note how the display typeface suggests a glass of bubbly prosecco.

Sayre and Jane discussing the folding of the pages.

Every day we stopped working at 1 pm so that we could walk across the street to Le Corderie for lunch. The meals were cooked by Cristina who had taught us how to make baccalà mantecato, risi e bisi, and tiramisù the day before. Here are some of the dishes available on this day. (No prosciutto and mozzarella sandwiches!)

Bigoli con anatra (bigoli pasta with duck sauce).


Lamb chops with vegetables and roasted potatoes.

Sara enjoying delicious gnocchi con funghi (potato dumpling with mushrooms) while Jane prepares to save part of her lunch for later.