LANGUAGE SCRAPS 02: MARK E. SMITH’S HANDWRITING AND THE TYPOGRAPHY OF THE FALL by Paul Wilson
120 x 180mm, 36 pages, black and white and risograph printed throughout, saddle stitched, second edition, 2023
In this essay Paul Wilson views The Fall through a typographic lens and explores their visual identity as propelled and produced by Mark E. Smith.
“Mark E. Smith’s handwriting became part of The Fall’s visual identity: a typographic signifier of and for The Fall. His attitude towards the development and articulation of a visual identity for The Fall, and in particular the use of his handwriting, reflects his position towards The Fall’s sonic identity. Further, his ambivalence towards contemporary technologies (of sound recording, communication and graphic design), together with his fascination with the idea of creative unwinding (or as he often calls it ‘unlearning’) continually relocates The Fall’s aesthetic tending towards an idealized primitivism.”
This essay was first published in Mark E. Smith and The Fall: Art, Music and Politics (2010) published by Routledge. Edited, updated and represented between March and May of 2021.