Born in Pomerania (now part of Poland), Kurt Weidemann served on the front in the Second World War and was taken prisoner by the Russians. After the war, he completed an apprenticeship as a typesetter in Lübeck. Between 1953 and 1955, he attended the Staatliche Akademie der Bildenden Künste (Stuttgart Art Academy), where he studied book graphics and typography. While studying he started a practice of his own, designing writing paper, logos and advertising. With his studies complete, he became type manager of the journal Der Druckspiegel. He left there in 1964 to become a professor at the Staatliche Akademie der Bildenden Künste. He taught there until 1983.
As a freelance graphic artist, he designed books for various publishers, as well as producing commercial art and consulting for advertising companies. He created identities for many well-known companies, including Deutsche Bahn, Coop, Shell, and Porsche. From 1987, he was a consultant for Daimler Benz, designing proprietary typefaces for the business. He also created Biblica, a typeface for the Deutsche Bibelgesellschaft (Germany bible society); the face was subsequently renamed ITC Weidemann Book after its creator.
In 1983 he was one of the founding members of the Wissenschaftliche Hochschule für Unternehmensführung (management college) in Koblenz. He taught verbal and visual communications there until 1993. He was also a member of the teaching staff at a high school in Karlsruhe from 1991 until 2000.
His work has been recognised with several prizes, including the 1955 Lucky Strike Designer Award from Raymond-Lowey-Stiftung. In 1965, he received Germany's order of Merit.
[LC, December 2009]