TWENTY-SIX consists of three pieces that explore the modern English alphabet. These pieces offer numerous perspectives on hand-set type, calling attention to physical aspects of this process. Each piece utilizes the standard characters of the alphabet in order to direct the participant toward specific aspects of the printing process that would be otherwise inaccessible due to the nature of manual type. Its purpose is to make viewers into active participants through a tactile engagement with the work.
This interaction evokes the more subtle qualities of hand-set type that have become outmoded and relegated to esoterica by the digital age. Both activating and activated by the viewer, the three pieces function as sculptures that simultaneously reference the physical nature of this method and its history.
Ben Pegram and Chris Semel live, work and collaborate in Chicago, IL. Ben will receive his BFA from The School of the Art Institute this May. Chris received his BA in photography from Columbia College Chicago in 2011. They met by coincidence in a record shop while both reaching for the same vinyl copy of Steely Dan’s Aja.