I wanted to create a piece of design to talk to the poet Sappho. Because her work comes to us on damaged papyri, her poems are often fragmented and illegible in some places. When translating Sappho, Anne Carson uses a square bracket, ] or [ to give the impression of missing matter. Carson notes that brackets are exciting, they imply “a free space of imaginal adventure.”

I used only the form of the square bracket to create an alphabet, hoping I could perhaps create a space for Sappho to speak through those gaps, finally completing those fragmented bits of verse after thousands of years. She has yet to speak to me, I realize it is because I have yet to make the alphabet in Greek.

Type specimen broadsheets
11 x 17 inches
Risograph print
February 2011