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A Humanizing Font

“Common Sans is a small piece of activism, disguised as a typeface”


The problem
The incessant influx of refugees flooding European coasts and boarders in the middle of 2015 escalated into an actual humanitarian crisis, one only precedented by that of the aftermath of WWII. Media channels were equally flooded with the word refugee, sometimes using it carelessly and often with a xenophobic undertone.

Our ambition
This was an issue close to us and we wanted people to stop and think about the words they use. To think beyond the words migrant, foreigner, refugee.

Our process
Together with Solvatten we decided to design a solution to this problem. Solvatten focuses on helping humanity through technology, which made it the ideal collaborator for this project. Together, we wanted to emphasize that being a refugee is only a temporary status, but that being human was permanent.

The result
Common Sans is a typeface that replaces the word refugee with the word human. A reminder that in some way or another we are all involved in this crisis. Because this is not a refugee crisis, but rather a human crisis. A reminder that we should not feel completely detached from a refugee because ultimately they are people, just like we are people.