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Neutra and Eames house numbers from Heath Ceramics

Neutra and Eames house numbers from Heath Ceramics
31 May 2011

Heath Ceramics and House Industries are launching Heath house numbers, three-dimensional clay tiles celebrating the legendary Neutra and Eames fonts.

The Heath artisans are uniquely qualified to create a three-dimensional ceramic representation of House Industries’ two-dimensional typographic world. Each clay tile is glazed in a matte finish with a raised, unglazed number. As with all Heath tiles, Heath house numbers are pressed, hand-glazed, trimmed, and kiln-fired. They fuse simple, crisp lines, geometric forms and rich glazes in bold and classic colors. The two companies designed the tiles to be modular and easily integrated within a Heath tile installation, as well as to be displayed on their own with the use of a beautiful, modern track system—available in either salvaged teak or stainless steel.

“Bringing the Neutra and Eames-inspired fonts to life in clay form is so exciting to us,” says Heath Ceramics Creative Director Catherine Bailey. “Forming these beautiful and refined type-shapes out of an imprecise material, like clay, creates a fantastic contrast. The finished piece becomes as interesting as what’s likely to be housed inside the homes where the numbers preside.”

Richard J. Neutra was a rare personality whose character combined an uncommon aesthetic ability with a profound sense of civic responsibility. His physio-psychic architecture linked living spaces to their surrounding landscapes, physically and intellectually enriching the entire being. Impressed with Neutra’s design sensibilities, House Industries consulted with his son and partner, Dion, to produce Neutraface—an extensive font family based on the lettering that adorned many Neutra buildings. Since first releasing Neutraface in 2001, House Industries has continued to expand the family of typefaces with alternative, condensed and slab-serif styles.

Charles and Ray Eames are among the most important American designers of this century. House Industries worked closely with the Eames family for over ten years to gain access to some of the more obscure archive materials, to seek approval for the designs and to get a feel for what Charles and Ray would have wanted in a font family that bears their name. The Eames Century Roman family has eight different weights, from a distinctively delicate thin to a bombastic extra black. Corresponding italics are on double duty with their subtle nod to Ray Eames’ handwriting style while also providing an accompaniment to the Roman styles. Keeping with the Eames philosophy of balancing form and function, House also developed a special stencil version of the heaviest weight of the text family.

The Neutra numbers (3x6 inches) are offered in museum black and mid-century white, while the more playful Eames numbers (4x4 inches) are available in bright yellow, paprika, and museum black.

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