Balkan Sans

Type Directors Club

Balkan received the type directors club certificate of excellence in type design. 2012


Balkan received Special Jury Award at 23rd Biennal of Design, Slovenia 2012.

Balkan Sans among the Best Typefaces of 2012 by Typographica

Type designers, educators, historians, engineers, and users select the year’s best new font releases.

Grand Prix from the Croatian Designers Society

In 2014 Balkan Sans was awarded the Grand Prix from the Croatian Designers Society on the Biennale exhibition.

Balkan* is a new typeface system that consists of Latin and Cyrillic scripts. It is based on the study of a phenomenon known as Balkan sprachbund**, a term used to describe neighboring languages whose sound and grammatical features have merged because of their proximity. The typeface system also represents an attempt to identify the features shared by some South Slavic languages and alphabets like Bosnian, Montenegrian, Croatian and Serbian.

We focused on the dual-literacy that characterizes Slavic peoples, many of whom use and transliterate both Latin and Cyrillic alphabets. Historically, there were three scripts in this region: Cyrillic, Latin and Glagolitic. The use of Latin and Cyrillic typifies the former Yugoslavian countries, today’s Serbia, Bosnia and Hercegovina as well as Montenegro.

Historically, both scripts in this region were bearers of cultural, ethnic, religious and political identities, but their communicative and symbolic functions were often out of step just for the sake of multi-ethnicity. On the other hand, close development of languages and scripts throughout history resulted in shared properties. Today some regional languages in the Western Balkans are so similar that they can even be thought of as dialects.

The Balkan typeface system is a series of fonts that decodes Latin and Cyrillic; it demystifies, depoliticizes and reconciles them for the sake of education, tolerance and, above all, communication. Though Balkan is a “font” in the usual sense, it can also be used to translate Croatian Latin into Serbian Cyrillic and vice versa. One could therefore think of the fonts as educational software capable of reconciling discrete scripts. Like all OpenType fonts, Balkan can be expanded to include the Russian, Macedonian and Bulgarian alphabets.

Balkan Sans and Balkan Sans Stencil consist of four styles – three of them have different alignments (e.g., all uppercase characters are Latin and lowercase characters are Cyrillic) and one style consists of uppercase Cyrillic and lowercase Latin characters.

Balkan Sans

  • Published
    by Typonine
  • Year 2012
  • Description

    1 weight. 8 styles. 8 OpenType fonts, 8 Web fonts. Designed by Nikola Djurek and Marija Juza.

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