Christa Schwarztrauber on Günter Gerhard Lange

Christa Schwarztrauber

GGL on his 100th birthday!
There were many opportunities to experience GGL and when it was possible, I always took them – to learn from him (in TGM typography courses). Or to hear him in his brilliant lectures.

My very personal experience: For the 15th anniversary of my hand typesetting workshop Fliegenkopf, I was planning a catalogue documenting the hand press ducks, typo graphics etc. that had been published so far. I wanted a foreword by Günter Gerhard Lange. He was not averse to it, but wanted to see what it would be and found it boring for future viewers.

“Why don’t you write about how heavy such a letter case is or how many letters are in a full bread box. Write about the historical beginnings, explain the technical terms, write about materials and tools, about early prints and whatever else might be interesting for laymen.”

With his advice he aroused my interest to rummage in old reference books, to read and write about early printers, about Freisprechen or Gautschen, about wandering journeymen, angular printers about Punkt and Cicero and many more. … and so, although fewer of my works were illustrated, the catalogue has also become an interesting brochure about the profession of typesetter.

Christa Schwarztrauber

P.S.: He didn’t write the foreword after all, but passed me on with a recommendation to Prof. Fleischmann (Bielefeld University of Applied Sciences), through whose exhibition “Three Printers from Ireland” (Neue Sammlung, Munich 1976) the idea for my workshop came about.