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Max Miedinger (24 December 1910 in Zurich, Switzerland – 8 March 1980, Zurich, Switzerland) was a Swiss typeface designer. He was famous for creating the Neue Haas Grotesk typeface in 1957 that was renamed Helvetica in 1960. Marketed as a symbol of cutting-edge Swiss technology, Helvetica achieved immediate global success.[1]

Between 1926 and 1930 Miedinger trained as a typesetter in Zurich, after which he attended evening classes at the Kunstgewerbeschule Zurich.

At age sixteen Max became an apprentice typesetter for Jacques Bollmann at a book printing office in Zurich. After four years as an apprentice, Miedinger enrolled in the School of Arts and Crafts.



At 26 he went to work as a typographer in the advertising department of Globus, a renowned chain of department stores[2]. After ten years at Globus, Miedinger gained employment with Haas Type Foundry as a representative. In 1954, he created his first typeface design for Haas, Pro Arte, a condensed slab serif.

In 1956 Miedinger became a freelance graphic designer. Shortly after he collaborated with Edouard Hoffmann at Haas on the typeface Neue Haas Grotesk, which would later be called Helvetica.


  • Helvetica (also known as Neue Haas Grotesk)
  • Pro Arte, a condensed slab serif. Undigitised.
  • Horizontal, a wide capitals design similar to Microgramma. Digitised as Miedinger.[3]
  • Helvetica Monospace
  • Helvetica Inserat


  1. ^ Andrew Dickson meets Gary Hustwit, creator and director of the film Helvetica
  2. ^ Malsy, Victor; Müller, Lars (2011). Helvetica forever : story of a typeface. Baden, Switzerland: Lars Müller. ISBN 3037781211. OCLC 171112004.
  3. ^ "Miediger". MyFonts. Monotype/Canada Type. Retrieved 9 June 2015.

External linksEdit

Laufer, David Calvin Dialogues With Creative Legends, New Riders Press, San Francisco, ISBN 978-0321885647, Page 98.