Exhibition Archive

Exhibition information

The 205th Exhibition nippon no nippon: helmut schmid

November 09, 2015 - December 22, 2015

design by ヘルムート・シュミット
design by helmut schmid
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The designer and typographer Helmut Schmid was born in Austria and studied under Emil Ruder in Basel, Switzerland. He is now based in Osaka. His works include logo designs for many popular brands, such as Pocari Sweat, Energen (Otsuka Pharmaceutical) and IPSA.
As a young man in 1968, the first article he published for the Swiss journal Typographische Monatsblätter (TM), dealt with tatami ― the traditional Japanese flooring material. He focused on Japanese forms and tools in everyday life through the eyes of a typographer, and visited various craftsmen. While deepening his knowledge, Schmid decided that he would like to convey the Japan of the past, the Japan that still exists in the present, and the Japan that promises to be discovered in the future.
In this exhibition, Schmid uses his fresh view to present the quiet beauty of Japan through words, photographs and typography.

place and term

kyoto ddd gallery
Monday, November 9 to Tuesday, December 22, 2015
weekdays 11:00 to 19:00
(saturday until 18:00)
closed sunday and holidays
entrance free, no parking lot

10 Uzumasa Kamikeibu-cho,
Ukyo-ku Kyoto-shi 616-8533
tel 075-871-1480
fax 075-871-1267

the nearest stations to ddd:
* 3 min. walk from Kyoto Subway Tozai line
Uzumasa-Tenjingawa station exit 1.
* 5 min. walk from Randen-Tenjingawa station
on the Arashiyama Main Line (Randen).

opening party & gallery talk

opening party :
Monday, November 9, 2015, 17:30 – 19:00
kyoto ddd gallery

gallery talk:
typography and typography
Monday, November 9, 2015; 16:00 – 17:30
kyoto ddd gallery, meeting hall
consecutive interpretation, entrance free,
40 listeners accepted
*We stopped accepting applications because there is no more place available.

Kyoto University of Art and Design special lecture

helmut schmid: typography and typography
Thursday, November 26, 2015; 17:00 – 18:30
at Kyoto University of Art and Design
Botenkan 1F, B11 hall
consecutive interpretation, entrance free, no reservation needed,
100 listeners accepted in order of arrival
co-hosted by Kyoto University of Art and Design
for more information, see gallery home page.

the exhibition background

Shortly after my arrival as a 24 year old in Osaka, I got a letter from the editor of the Swiss magazine Typographische Monatsblätter TM, inviting me to write contributions about Japanese forms and objects from a typographers viewpoint.
Writing the articles brought me in contact not only with the items , but also with their creators. I called the series japan japanese because I intended to show my own understanding of Japan; a Japan which existed and still exists, yet one which needs to be discovered.
The black and white photos used in the articles were taken, with exceptions, with photographer friends.
In a letter from February 1969 Emil Ruder commented: ‘I find your TM contributions excellent and I can clearly see what refinements your sojourn in Japan has resulted in.’After more than forty years, the TM articles were given a new life. japan japanese were published in 2012 in German, English and Japanese by Robundo Publishers.The exhibition, nippon no nippon, at Kyoto ddd gallery, started with this book.Thanks to all the people who have worked for the exhibition.
Thanks especially to Japan — the country which continues to inspire. (helmut schmid)


Helmut Schmid, born in Austria in 1942, made a compositor’s apprenticeship in West Germany, then studied under modern typographer Emil Ruder at the Basel School of Design in Switzerland. Mid 1970s worked in West Germany for the Social Democrat chancellors Willy Brandt and Helmut Schmidt. In 1980 established packaging identity for ethical drugs of Otsuka Pharmaceutical.
Schmid now works in Osaka, blending self-initiated projects with commercial projects.Since 1992 he has published his self-initiated typographic reflections,eleven issues so far. He is a contributor to magazines such as Baseline, Idea, and Typographische Monatsblätter. His books include “typography today” (1980/2015) published by Seibundo Shinkosha, “the road to Basel” (1997/2004) published by Robundo.
“helmut schmid; design is attitude” was edited and designed by Fjodor Geijko, and published by Birkhäuser in Basel in 2006.