Anuradha Kodagoda from Sunday Observer wrote about 30 Days of Akuru project.
An emerging trend on social media these days, ‘30 Days of Akuru’, created by Akuru Collective are a bunch of artists who have come together to inspire interest in typography. “The words etched on the surface hold the power to make or break this world: ‘Akuru’ sees this power and looks to understand it better so that we may share it, use it and surmount it,” that’s how they quote it in their ‘Akuru’ manifesto.
Our friends over at Daily Artra interviewed Chamodi on 30 Days of Akuru projects.
The technicalities and semantics that go into handwriting build a platform for more than just the matter of written art. Words are created from letters and letters build from the recesses of an artist’s mind – typography, space where written art and visual art meet in the middle. Type design is a significant form of art, its importance lying in the insightful way it is conveyed. A letter albeit just a lone figure is a fundamental figure in the foundation of communication, language and bridging culture. Through this notion, a new concept emerges – 30 Days of Akuru, and Chamodi Waidyathilaka, co-creator expounds on this.
#30daysofAkuru first edition, is an open call to visual designers, illustrators, type designers, typographers and anyone who’s interested in explore the endless possibilities and new dimensions of Sinhala letterforms, Sinhala script. We challenge you to create your own new and exciting interpretation of a selected Sinhala letter, one letter per day for the Month of June. The project aim is to create an awareness and importance of Sinhala typography and it’s endless typography and graphic possibilities.
#30daysofAkuru is a project hosted by Akuru Collective and organised by theLetters.Lanka team. our aims are to inspire interests in letterforms and highlight regional graphic designers, graphic and visual design artists and illustrators to create talent in varieties of sinhala font design and bring awareness about the importance of expanding typography.
The project is initiated by Chamodi Waidyathilaka and Vihanga Samaradiwakara and Leyanvi Mirando and Samadara Ginige is also in the project committee.
Akuru Collective is partnering with ATypI and FARU (Faculty of Architecture Research Unit), University of Moratuwa, to orgnise the first ATypI Working Seminar in Colombo 0n March 23–24 at the University of Moratuwa.
A progressive discussion on local typographic culture, its evolution and impressions on Sri Lankan society held in Colombo: Focus on the significance of the Dutch era press for Sinhala and Tamil letterform evolution: Conceptualised by Akuru Collective and Mooniak and supported by Netherlands’ Embassy and AOD Colombo
a thought-provoking discussion on typography and its social influence
in Sri Lanka, the first ever Akurucon was organised by the Akuru
collective of typographic practitioners and enthusiasts. The conference
is part of a larger project being conducted in collaboration with AOD
and the Netherlands’ embassy, parallel to the 280th anniversary of the
Dutch press printing in Ceylon. Akurucon included a conference, open
talk forums and a series of workshops during August 29th and September
1st. The events were held at various locations around Colombo linked to
Sri Lanka’s language and culture, and contributed a fresh conversation
on what it means to revive the island’s printed letter heritage. It
aimed to study and discuss the influence of the Dutch press on the
evolution of Sri Lankan typography and communication, at a time when
letterforms were being revolutionised due to dawn of movable type.
Further, Akurucon led its discussions towards defining new typographic
innovations to revive this evolution to meet the needs of today’s world
where digital and physical worlds continue to transcend. Akurucon was
participated by professionals linked to typography, printing, media,
design, calligraphy, language and academia, plus students and general
enthusiasts. Among the speakers and knowledge-contributors to the event,
there was the Dutch typographic expert Martin Majoor, the Sri Lankan
letterform researcher and design academic Dr. Sumantrhi Samarawikrama,
astronomer and numismatist Dr. Kavan Ratnatunga, and the typographic
designers Pathum Egodawatta, Kosala Senevirathne and Tharique Azeez.
of the major highlights of the event was the release of an alpha (work
in progress version) of the Galle font, which is the revival letterform
set resulting from the research and study of the Dutch press in Ceylon.
Akuru collective in collaboration with Mooniak, Leafycode and HostGrid has presented the Galle font with an app
that will help the users of this alpha stay connected to its course of
evolution. This means that the app will keep track of new versions of
the font as and when the type designers and font developers release
updated versions, and automatically download them for the users,
allowing them to follow the evolution of the Galle font.
the Akurucon, its organisers of Akuru Collective will continue to focus
their efforts on preservation, documentation and building discourse
around the Dutch Government Press in Ceylon,
which was the first to print Sinhala and Tamil languages. The Dutch
press in Ceylon is recorded as one of the most prominent printing
presses in the region at the time, and had the ability to print Dutch,
Sinhala,Tamil and Burmese, playing a regional role in progressing local
typographic forms to graduate to press-friendly formats. This regional
leadership went on to influence the history of typography and printing
in Sri Lanka, and played a major role in shaping the country’s
linguistic history and heritage. However, it is often underrated and
even completely disregarded during the discussions of cultural and
economic inheritance from the Dutch-Sri Lanka relationship. This overall
project aims to change that thorough research leading to an academic
publication, an exhibition, several talks by international typographic
experts, workshops and a book publication. It will also highlight the
historical Dutch-Sri Lanka bond and build new links, conversations, and
possibly even collaborations, between the two nations’ typographic
For more information on future events, discussions and collaborations, reach Akuru collective on firstname.lastname@example.org or meet us on every first Sunday of the month at the Royal Asiatic Society.