Fahad A Dhawi

SHOKRAN | THANK YOU Fahad A. Dhawi 2014 This image represents an exploration of Arabic and Latin (English) letters through a bilingual design communication. “Shokran” means “Thank You”. I used the “V” and “O” letters instead of Arabic diacritic dots to test and see whether Arabic speakers and non-Arabic learners can still understand the word.
SHOKRAN | THANK YOU, Fahad A. Dhawi, 2014
SHOKRAN | THANK YOU, Fahad A. Dhawi, 2014

How can Arabic typography and graphic communication technologies help Arabic and non-Arabic speakers in bilingual (Arabic-Latin) communication design?

Central Saint Martins

This practice-based research aims to use Arabic typographic communication and digital text animation to communicate a message solely through textual content instead of imagery. It employs an expressive approach to Arabic typography and explores relationships between Latin and Arabic typefaces. It intends to aid Arabic and non-Arabic speakers to learn, explore, understand and recognize the basics of the Arabic script, language, grammar and letterforms. Four twentieth century Arabic-Latin typefaces will be re-employed using graphic software and social media for educational, social and bilingual communications.

The aim is to analyse twentieth century letterform systems that attempted to make Arabic script more accessible (through simplification) to non-Arabic communities.

The power of language and formal communication through Quran and poetry led to a strong structure of calligraphy and typography. Like Latin, Arabic has its roots in the Phoenician alphabet. This is an underexplored area, which allows for an exploration of similarities and differences with the aim of understanding how both scripts can work together. Several problems facing the Arabic script today will be explored as well as finding ways of resolving the geometric structure of Arabic letterforms in bilingual (Arabic-Latin) communication through comparison and analysis with Latin letterforms.

The methodology is a systematic process in which Arabic type-design history will be explored along with the use of different archives in London, Amsterdam and the Middle East. This will inform my practice alongside an exploration of contemporary Arabic typography. The original contribution to knowledge is facilitating the use of original Arabic types rather than creating an Arabic version of a Latin type. Due to the demand for new Arabic typefaces, typographers are developing modern typefaces for different applications. Dhawi shares a purpose to preserve the existence and development of the Arabic script and typography.  


Dr Rathna Ramanathan

James Swinson

Dr Sheena Calvert