“The figure ‘4’ features a very interesting relationship between the shape and its closed counter. It seems to differ from structures such as “8” or “A”, where the counter-shapes―the white spaces inside of the signs―either appear sort of full and static in round forms, or are defined by adding an independent element such as a crossbar. In the case the number 4, it takes one gesture to create three strokes and at the same time encapsulate the counter-shape, leaving, in the bottom-right corner, obvious clues of its construction.
In my design, I tried to seize this particularity. The first reason for this is an ever-going exploration of impossible gestures, or how typography can step away from its calligraphic origins the same way that Escher’s mind-twisting creations step away from the logic of reality. What should have been a counter-shape gets a ductus of its own, making the basic inside-outside dialectic somewhat confusing.
A second inspiration was my direct environment and the personal experience of living in the country whose language I did not master. I wanted the design to reflect a sort of interaction between a complex inside life and its seemingly stable, simple-looking and shield-like envelop.”