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TDC Explores Latin American Typography With “Cha Che Chi” Conference

The One Club

Jan 05, 2023

The Type Directors Club (TDC) continues to explore the ways typography is used to form and transform creative communities and the broader culture, this time focusing on Latin America with Cha Che Chi, the upcoming edition of its Type Drives Culture conference series taking place virtually on March 3-4, 2023.

The name Cha Che Chi comes from sounds that echo across Latin America: chabona, chango, chava, chela, checar, chicha, chichón, chido, chimichurri, chulo, churro, salsicha, chimarrão, bochecha, pichação.  Across languages, that common alliteration connects the cultures of the continent, serving as a thread amongst very diverse people. 

TDC, part of The One Club for Creativity, will bring the dynamic range and rhythm of Latin American culture as it manifests visually, and typographically.  The conference will look at specific design movements and styles that are prevalent in Latin America, explore how the connection to history and heritage manifests among Latin American diaspora, and showcase for the rest of the world on how Latin American typography and design exists and innovates.  

The conference lineup was curated by Sol Matas, Berlin-based independent type designer originally from Argentina and a member of the TDC Advisory Board, and Laura Scofield, a Brazilian-born, New York-based designer, strategist, and educator who currently serves as senior design manager at The Atlantic Re:think.  Both will introduce, and moderate sections, of the conference.

Other confirmed speakers include:

  • Julia A. Aguiar and Carlos Bocai, cofounders, designers, Anywhere, Brasília/New York
  • Marco Avilez, director, executive producer, Tipos, Santiago
  • Yani Arabena and Guillermo Vizzari, cofounders, directors, Yani & Guille, Buenos Aires
  • Tulio Cerquize, graphic designer, illustrator, São Paulo
  • Cyla Costa, graphic designer, lettering artist, Curitiba (Brazil)
  • Fer Cozzi, graphic designer, type designer, Buenos Aires
  • Tony de Marco, partner, art director, Meio Brazil; cofounder, editor, Tupigrafia, Sines (Portugal)
  • Fred Gelli, CEO, Tátil Design, Rio de Janeiro
  • Gustavo Greco, founder, creative director, Greco Design, Minas Gerais (Brazil)
  • Seb de la Hoz and Jason Guzmán, cofounders, type designers, Bastarda Type, Bogotá/New York
  • Ximena Jiménez, lettering artist, muralist, Bogotá
  • Azucena Cabezas León and Alinder Espada Camones, cofounders, graphic designers, Carga Máxima, Lima
  • Beatriz Lozano, designer, typographer, educator, Brooklyn
  • Susana Machicao, brand consultant, Visual Communications and Design, Machicao Design, La Paz
  • Alejandro Magallanes, designer, lettering artist, Mexico City
  • Laureano Menéndez, head of design, BBDO Argentina, Buenos Aires
  • Nubia Navarro, founder, Nubikini Studio, Bogotá 
  • Eduarda Nieto, senior designer, AKQA Sweden
  • Daniel Sabino, founder, lead type designer, Blackletra Type Foundry, São Paulo
  • Rodrigo Saiani, founder, type designer, Plau, Rio de Janeiro
  • Oliver Siegenthalar, CCO, partner, S & Co., Bogotá
  • Julieta Ulanovsky, director, ZkySky Design Studio, Buenos Aires
  • Raphaël Verona, founder, Altiplano. La Paz/Lausanne (Switzerland)

“Cha Che Chi is a unique forum for the design and typographic communities to explore cultures that aren’t often gathered on the same stage,” said Sol Matas.  “The scope of Latin American communities is enormous, and spread over a vast geography including the diaspora.  This will be a rare opportunity to celebrate the abundance it has to offer.”

The conference will cover a range of topics, from amateur street typography to agency boardrooms.  Presentations and discussions will include the behind-the-scenes of a logotype that dances to the beat of Rio Carnival, distinctive reinterpretations of popular Mexican imagery, Perú’s Chicha public placard and poster styles, the evolution of a campaign to raise women’s voices, and how lettering and politics mix in the famous distinctive style of Brazilian graffiti Pichação. 

Conference branding was created by Nubia Navarro at Nubikini Studio in Bogotá. Encompassing vivid colors, rectilinear patterns, and constant movement, the brand is inspired by aguayo cloth, street lettering traditions, and the ingenuity of having to innovate out of limited resources — bringing together a clash of traditional and digital, old world and new.

Cha Che Chi follows on the heels of TDC’s Ezhishin, the first-ever conference dedicated to Native North American typography held last fall.  

More information and registration for Cha Che Chi is available here.

The One Club for Creativity, producer of The One Show, ADC Annual Awards, Type Directors Club showcase, TDC Ascenders, Young Guns, and more, is the world’s foremost non-profit organization whose mission is to support and celebrate the global creative community.  Revenue generated from entries to its global awards shows goes back into the industry to fund programming under the organization’s four pillars: Education, Inclusion & Diversity, Gender Equality, and Creative Development.  

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