Verdigris and Apertura

Verdigris, Apertura

One face I’ve admired for its versatility quite a while now is Mark van Bronkhorst’s MVB Verdigris. It’s a Renaissance Roman that demonstrates a deep understanding of setting long texts. When in the hands of a good typographer it serves them well, and when worked by a novice, it’s forgiving and takes no umbrage. In case you’re wondering, it’s pronounced Vare-di-gree, similar in rhythm to pedigree.

Taking the display role is Christian Robertson’s Apertura, a contemporary modernist sans. Apertura’s easy to spot with its definitive single-story a. Together, the two faces create a bit of tension, which the typographer can harness to emphasize a classical-over-modernist quality, or just the opposite, or some well-sung harmony in between.

Verdigris, Apertura

Apertura, Verdigris

Apertura comes in a range of weights across two widths, and if you must, a double-story a drops in as an alternate via OpenType Stylistic Set. Verdigris’s strength is text between 8 and 12 point, though the characters don’t completely fall apart at larger sizes. If you’re looking for a display cut of Verdigris, it does exist, though MVB Fonts holds it exclusively. It’s called Verdigris Big.

Verdigris, Apertura

Verdigris, Apertura

Above, Apertura serves well delivering text of modest length. Below, the italic cut is faithful to the spirit of Pierre Haultin’s italic from which it’s based. Note how the blobbiness of the strokes, visible up close, disappears at size.

Verdigris Italic

Verdigris Italic


  1. Posted January 10, 2013 at 1:59 AM | Permalink

    Wow, a daring pairing! Interesting – wouldn’t have occurred to me. (Thanks for an overall interesting series.)

  2. Posted January 11, 2013 at 3:57 PM | Permalink

    These happen to be two Bay Area designers, too.

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