Introductory Arabic Type Course at AUB

This spring, the elective course “Introduction to Arabic Type Design” at AUB [American University of Beirut] was introduced. It is given part of the Graphic Design program at AUB. Third and fourth year students who were interested in Arabic type and wanted to develop their skills in understanding and drawing Arabic letters, enrolled in the course. The course was an ongoing collaboration between the students and I. I had to evaluate what they could and needed to learn as opposed to what was too advanced for them.

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Censored. Why now? Graffiti in Beirut post Arab revolutions.

Since the publication of the Arabic Graffiti Book in 2011, which I co-edited with Don Karl, the scene and stance of graffiti in Beirut has changed drastically. With the development of the Arab Spring across the neighboring Arab nations such as in Syria and Egypt, Beirut has experienced a new Arab graffiti scene and a new censorship aspect that was not present in the previous years. Alongside Lebanese socio-political stencils and murals, Beirut is being bombarded with Syrian, Egyptian and as usual Palestinian political and revolutionary writings.


عذرا إن أزعجنا أحد، إننا في سوريا، نبني وطن
Sorry for disturbing anyone, We are in Syria, Building a Nation

Continue reading “Censored. Why now? Graffiti in Beirut post Arab revolutions.”

The Khatt Foundation Type Design Workshop

The Khatt Foundation Type Design Workshop
Hosted by Tashkeel & Pavilion Downtown Dubai, 21 – 25 October 2011

5 Days workshop, 3 Days Lecture Series by several renowned Arab designers.

Workshop leaders:
Huda Smitshuijzen AbiFares, Lara Assouad Khoury, Pascal Zoghbi

Guest speakers: Wissam Shawkat, Sheikha Bin Dhaher, Salem Al Qassimi
1 Poster Exhibition (outcomes of workshop)

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Interview with Khatt – Love your letters, they are your babies!

Interview with Pascal Zoghbi by Huda AbiFares from the Khatt Foundation.
Part of the Multiple Baselines series.

Pascal Zoghbi is one of the young generation of Arab type designers. He has participated in two of the design research projects of the Khatt Foundation: ‘Typographic Matchmaking’ and ‘Typographic Matchmaking in the City’ respectively. This interview will focus on his Arabic type design—mainly work that was inspired by hand-made lettering, calligraphy and street art.

Read the interview on the Khatt Website >>

Typographic Matchmaking in the City / Symposium, Film screening & Book launch IN BEIRUT

Location: Beirut Art Center [BAC] Date: Monday, 11 April 2011 Time: 19:00 – 22:00
Free Entrance but registration is required.
RSVP to khatt.foundation@gmail.com


Illustration by Naji El Mir: the Hamsa Project by Erik van Blokland, Pascal Zoghbi & Joumana Al Jabri.

The Typographic Matchmaking in the City project is a design research project investigating new approaches for bilingual lettering and poetic narrative for public space. Continue reading “Typographic Matchmaking in the City / Symposium, Film screening & Book launch IN BEIRUT”

1st Printing Press in the Middle East

The Printing press of Saint Antonius in “Quzhayya” is the first printing press in the Middle East. It is located in a monastery in the Valley of the Saints in the mountains of the north Kaza of Lebanon. According to historians, a movable type printing press was imported from England to the Saint Antonius Monastery in 1585. The first publication was the book of “Mazameer” dated from 1610, and now present in the University of the Holy Ghost in Kaslik, Jouniyé, Lebanon.

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Experimental Arabic/Latin Type Workshop


Arabic Letter “Yeh” of Seria Arabic type drawn with coffee, ink and dantelle pattern.

Students in the Advanced Typography course at the Lebanese American University [LAU] were asked to experiment with textures/patterns and try to apply them on existing bi-script Arabic/Latin fonts in-order to create their own experimental fonts. The students were handed the outlines of Seria Arabic and Fedra Arabic.

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