At the center of this poster are two Arabic words for “no” (لا in green and كلا in white): a big NO to the many ills facing us today. The manifesto at the bottom of the poster lists phrases of defiance using the word “NO” and other forms of negation. Most are drawn from real signs held up at protests in Lebanon, the United States, Russia, Bulgaria and India. Others reference songs by Lebanese musicians Ziad al-Rahbani, Yasmine Hamdan and Bu Kolthoum that use caustic humor as a vehicle for social criticism. Alongside these serious phrases are everyday words of rebellion by children, which lighten the mood but are also a reminder of children’s vulnerability in the face of injustice.
In 2016, Pascal Zoghbi was invited by the Station Beirut art centre to participate in its Yala Dada project and exhibition. He was asked to recreate Hugo Ball’s poem, ‘Karawane’ in Arabic. Reviving the typographic treatment of the original poem, each verse was set in a different font to echo the different vocalizations. This poster is a reinterpretation of the art piece created for the exhibition, typeset with a selection of typefaces from the 29LT fonts catalogue, including both Arabic and Latin scripts. The number preceding each verse in the poem refers to a typeface that is present in the typographic grid on the reverse of the poster.
‘Karawane’ is a poem by Hugo Ball, a German author, poet, and one of the leading Dadaists. It was originally performed in the Cabaret Voltaire, Zurich in 1916; the same year the Dada Manifesto was written and performed, too. The printed version was later published in the Dada Almanach, and Ball´s performance can thus be seen as one of the key moments in the development of Dadaism. The artist comes from a literary and theatrical background and his reinvented language, without meaning or grammar, is also known as Lautsprache. The poem consists of nonsensical words; the meaning, however, resides in its meaninglessness, reflecting the chief principle behind Dadaism.
Dadaism was developed in reaction to World War 1, with its founders expressing their discontent towards violence, war, and radical politics. The movement also rejected the logic, reason, and aestheticism of modem capitalist society. The revival of this poem, in our present times, marks the rejection of existing political corruption and daily breaches of human rights in the Arab world, especially in Lebanon, which is the mother nation of Zoghbi.
29LT Poster #02 – 2023
29LT Poster #01 – 2021
Get both publications for 12€ instead of 16€.
The 2021 publication revolves around the topic of the diverse cultural, political, and linguistic journeys a certain language undertakes, and the different scripts that are adopted to personify it. This topic came to light from the Aljamiado research throughout 2020 and 2021 while the typefaces 29LT Okaso and Oskura were being created. Aljamiado manuscripts were written using the Arabic script, but when read out loud, they sound like archaic Spanish filled with Arabic Islamic words (lexicons). By definition, Aljamiado, or Aljamía texts, are manuscripts using the Arabic script for transcribing Romance languages such as Spanish and Portuguese. You can read the full article about the 29LT Okaso typeface, where a comprehensive explanation of this topic is tackled.
From the Aljamiado topic, other scripts’ stories were found and researched. The interest was in languages that adopted and changed to different scripts based on historical, cultural, and/or political influences. From the collected research, it is important to understand that our identities are intertwined with different backgrounds, cultures, and languages. We are recognized by our past, our roots, and our mother language. From a diverse list of languages researched, three topics were selected for the publication: the Turkish language, the Post-Soviet languages, and the Vietnamese language. The publication contains four chapters, each written in two or three languages in connection with the topic. The use of several languages and scripts echoes the drive of 29LT to support several world scripts. Every chapter showcases the interlaced visual approach of two or more scripts that coexist visually to trigger historical ties.
The entire publication has a unifying design approach while each chapter retains a specific layout design. Each chapter layout is inspired by a visual research representing the subject.
The 2019 publication focuses on the essential element of writing and reading: the letter. It explores the psychology of writing and the link to human nature: culturally, historically, politically, artistically, scientifically, etc. These materials came to light during the revamping of the whole 29LT visual identity in 2019. A new 29LT logo was created, and a pure typographic website was designed to showcase 29LT fonts. In order to stage each typeface and create a comprehensive type specimen for it, strong content was required, which had a link to typography. The need to research and find timeless literature on the importance of writing, the essence of the letters, the philosophy behind languages, and the link between the mind and the pen became of great importance.
Extensive content was encountered from historical philosophers, poets, politicians, writers, and master calligraphers. Part of it was reserved for the printed publication and complemented with specifically written text, and the rest was used for the digital type specimens on the website.
The main focus of all the content embraced the prominence of type.
THE MULTIPLE FACETS OF THE LETTERS
29LT Type Specimen Issue #01 – 2019
INTRIGUING SCRIPT JOURNEYS
29LT Type Specimen Issue #02 – 2021
Get both publications for 12€ instead of 16€.
The 2015 publication was the first printed product of 29LT. It categorized all of the 29LT fonts catalog and showcased the fonts as tools to create beautiful layouts. Following a technical index of the fonts, each spread was typeset with one typeface with the content and layout reflecting its characteristics. Hence, each spread tells its own little story so the reader can take the time to enjoy their reading experience while viewing the fonts.
You can read the full article blog on this publication at the following link.