2021 Typography Fellow: Ximena Amaya


As the Fellow for Mujeres Hispanas y Tipografía, Ximena Amaya is designing the bilingual catalog based on the outcomes of the research and design projects that the designers produced. Ximena is a 7th term ArtCenter Undergraduate Graphic Design (Gx) student from Mexico City. She participated in Plan B: Spirit of the Bauhaus (TestLab Berlin 2019), and received the 2019 HMCT Award for Excellence in Typography. Her interests, always driven by curiosity, range from print and spending a lot of time looking at books to spatial articulations of design and exploration of new media, and a significant interest in language itself.


Before arriving at ArtCenter and LA, Ximena started her design journey in Mexico City at Centro University. She studied Visual Communication for two years before going to Barcelona, searching for more creative outlets and exploring. She has always been keen to travel as much as possible, which developed her fascination for street typography and signs from the cities she visited, and an interest in learning different languages and investigating other scripts—now big motivators behind her design practice.

Work samples by Ximena Amaya


Growing up in Mexico inspired her design approach, and Ximena feels that working on Mujeres Hispanas y Tipografía is a great opportunity. “Learning from Hispanic women and what they are doing in their respective contexts has been very inspiring and a beautiful way to connect back with my cultural identity as a Latin female graphic designer.

Yes, the pandemic forced this residency and this fellowship to be digital, keeping us away from working at the Typography Center and physically sharing our creative energy. At the same time, it provided the opportunity to have a fantastic group of women bringing to HMCT their unique design perspectives. Their projects include Sandra García & Dafne Martínez (Tipastype), who are working on a typeface for children learning to read in Mexico, where I learned to read and write as well; Jimena Gamio’s research on Quechua and our pre-Hispanic roots; Laura Meseguer’s stencil font and her fascination with vernacular letters (which I completely share); and Marina Garone’s research on the history of women in the print world in Mexico—a history I feel very close to as it is part of what led me to become a graphic designer.

The connection of all these projects, both their history and the future of Hispanic graphic designers, makes me feel very honored to be part of it. All the projects have tapped into some aspect of who I am. I believe diverse projects have the power to do that for designers, which is why I think participating, creating, and promoting programs like this residency is essential, and makes me grateful to have the chance to be working on the documentation of Mujeres.”



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