On the second page of the new Graf von Faber-Castell catalog there is an interesting image: a black version of the Perfect Pencil along with a black pocket pencil.
What’s more, considering the size of the lead this appears to be the magnum version of the Perfect Pencil:
This is the “anthracite” version, and according to the catalog it will be available this autumn. It has a PVD coating (physical vapor deposition) of titanium.
Along with the excitement and interest that accompanies the announcement of a new product, there is a sense of poignancy found in the first few pages of this catalog as well. All of the Graf von Faber-Castell catalogs, issued yearly from 1993, featured a photograph and a personal note from Anton-Wolfgang Graf von Faber-Castell—eighth in an unbroken line of Fabers and Faber-Castells, going back to 1761. With the Count’s passing in 2016, his son Charles assumed the mantle of the Graf von Faber-Castell line. This catalog, then, is the first without the familiar photograph of Count Anton.
The two-page message addresses the notion of change by alluding to the time when Baron Lothar von Faber took over the family firm in 1839. And rather than that time being one of instability, Lothar would go on to transform the company by producing much higher-quality products than his predecessor.
So in our own way and in our own time we are witnessing a change of era within writing culture, one whose kind hasn’t occurred since 1978, and worth pausing to consider.
Anton-Wolfgang Graf von Faber-Castell (1941-2016)