Download Full Text (650 KB)
Dimensions: 30 inches wide, 36 inches tall
Inkjet on matte paper, printed on both sides
Artist's narrative: Letter 166 unfolds Paul Laurence Dunbar’s reaction to a critique he had received by Booker T. Washington regarding "Tuskegee Song," which Washington commissioned Dunbar to write. In this song, Dunbar discusses the triumphs and tribulations of the past, present, and what would come in the future. The poster title “Growing Pride” represents both the South’s pride and Dunbar's. He was unapologetic in his response to Washington and stood firm in his beliefs that his original writing was most effective. The imagery is a stamp traced and cut on foam, inspired by the pattern of the carpet in Dunbar’s study. White floral curtains — mimicking the ones found in his study — were incorporated in the overlay on the stamp to bring in the theme of time. These two images combine to visualize how the room looks from floor to ceiling — symbolizing the confidence and inner strength that fully embodied Dunbar at the time of writing this letter. The type palette is Acumin, designed by Robert Slimbach, and Legitima, designed by César Puertas. The pairing of these allows for structure yet individuality. The italics and modulation of Legitima draw connections to Dunbar’s humanistic writings.
Paul Laurence Dunbar, Black History, Ohio History, Dayton History, Typography, Poetry
Art and Design | Graphic Design
Doggett, Elaina, "Growing Pride" (2023). Life in Letters: A Typographic Poster Exhibition Featuring Paul Laurence Dunbar. 14.