This week, I’m sharing all the found type I documented on the streets of my recent trip to New Orleans. Focusing mainly on signage, I found specimens in every direction and in a huge variety of materials, shapes, and sizes. I walked a ton of neighborhoods, but none offered up as much as the Garden District, French Quarter, and the adjacent neighborhoods around these.
New Orleans has a rich history of industry. A natural part of industry is businesses dying off and new ones opening up in their place and old advertisements and signage fading away. As a result, there are a ton of ghost signs loaded with type hiding in plan sight on building façades.
The use of mosaic tile can be found everywhere on the streets, and particularly in the French Quarter. Type can be found printed/painted on the tile. The tiles can also be used as old style pixels to create the type on the thresholds of businesses.
It’s particularly tough to ignore all the signage still in use in New Orleans. The materials have changed over time, but the type and design have been preserved. But in some instances, the original still remains.
It seems like an unlikely place, but the utility covers proved to be far from boring in New Orleans. The examples were few and far between, but they were strikingly odd given their simple functions.
While the streets were full of examples of unique letterforms, it doesn’t capture all the sights there were to see. Next week, I’ll share the final treasure trove I documented: the cemeteries of New Orleans. In case you missed Part 1, hop on over and see all the great pieces of found type all relating to the pharmaceutical history of New Orleans.