Parsons / The New School

BFA Communication Design

Thesis 2016–17

Dorothy Cruz
UTO — Unidentified Typographic Object

Poetry is a piece of writing that challenges and pushes the limits of language by using metaphors to represent and symbolize abstractions. A “poetic” piece is full of secrets and hidden messages that offer the viewer the chance to form their own interpretation. Cryptography, on the contrary, conceals a message into code. It is meant to be translated by someone that is capable of doing so. Nonetheless, there is a fairly close relationship between cryptography and poetry. In the same way that poetry aims to express an idea, cryptography tries to communicate a message. Both are delivered either written or spoken and both also leave the reader with a sense of bewilderment. However, if the crypto-poetic message were interesting enough, one would engage them in the process of deciphering and interpretation.

My design is an attempt to create a balance between the two by making an abstract exploration of typography that challenges the traditional notions of letterform and shows how we can learn by associated connections. I designed a poetic and personal representation of typography that can be used for both encryptions and visual poems with three levels of understanding: the first has complete readability and legibility, the second is reduced to the most basic elements of design, points, and the third is an abstraction.


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Parsons / The New School

BFA Communication Design
Thesis 2016–17