Font For John Cage

Ryan Maelhorn's picture
HVB's picture

Cute - but I think it would be more appropriate for Philip Glass

5star's picture

Philip Glass Philip Glass Philip Glass...


Theunis de Jong's picture

.. I was expecting the typographic equivalent of 4'33" ..

kentlew's picture

Based on the handwriting and sketches of American experimental composer John Cage, this set was produced in conjunction with The Museum of Contemporary Art in Los Angeles and the John Cage Trust. This unique collection includes 52 graphic extras culled from the composer's notes and scores, as well as the "Cage Silence" font inspired by Cage's seminal work 4' 33".

gluk's picture

if Idea was 4'33", something went wrong, because on my computer in font preview:

and should be probably:

Ryan Maelhorn's picture

Wow, that is really bizarre. The idea was indeed to pay homage to 4'33".

This is what I get when I open the font in the native Win Xp font viewer:

And this is what it looks like when I open it up in Fontlab:

What craziness is this?!! Perhaps our computers are designed to put in some "basic sans font" info into a font if they can't find any outlines? But then, why would my computer not do the same?

Ryan Maelhorn's picture

By the way, Gluk. I really really like your Yokawerad font.

Theunis de Jong's picture

Ryan, mysteriously enough I went with a mental "it's kinda okay" because I saw something different than both screen shots above!

On my Win 7 machine, all characters were neatly chopped off exactly at the baseline and so I reckoned it was representing Cage's "less is more" rule.

I'll see if I can post an image. It did look kind of neat.

gluk's picture

I think, at least glyphs U+0020 - U+007e should exist in font (without outlines as a space). I made so in my example:
Font FontForJohnCage.otf have 0 glyphs.

Comment from Youtube:
"John Cage is so smart that he copyright silence."

gluk's picture

By the way, Gluk. I really really like your Yokawerad font.
It's nice to hear

Ryan Maelhorn's picture

"John Cage is so smart that he copyright silence."

But he didn't copyright silence at all. The whole point of the piece is that there is no such thing as silence.

Jens Kutilek's picture

There's even sheet music for 4′33″:

By the way, this is an effort to create a really minimal font:

Theunis de Jong's picture

Weird, how a minimal font gets mangled differently on different versions of Windows:

Jens, a fascinating look inside what makes fonts tick! (And how to make them go 'tk' instead.)

eliason's picture

To test your John Cage font, you can use this pangram:

Crazy J. Cage kept quiet for several minutes, bowed, & headed to the exit.

Ryan Maelhorn's picture

I still don't understand why anyone can see anything at all, and where these forms are coming from, I created no outlines in fontlab. We need an OS expert.

interestingly though, I think Cage would have liked this even more

charles ellertson's picture


You probably should remember that John Cage was a Leibniz sort of guy. A universal mind. Well, in the arts.

The font you show might work for some sort of historical placement of the guy, but surely would not be what he'd pick were he working today.

Nick Shinn's picture

Kegler beat you to the punch, kid.
And, unlike the font biz, you can’t call a revival of conceptual art your own design.
AFAIK, “Schrödinger” is not yet taken.

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