A 3 days workshop that examines the relationship between sound and form in writing systems. Through the lens of Arabic as a language, a script, a school of design and an identity, we collectively aim to discover the connections we make between sounds and how we translate them into shapes and forms. We will collectively question our understanding of our native tongue(s) vs foregin languages, how we react to them, and how we interact with them.

The workshop is a discussion around the relationship between the sound of a letterform and its written physical properties (graphetics). The workshop takes an experimental and a spontaneous approach towards examining our own individual experiences and biases that inform our understanding of spoken and written languages. 

The workshop is also backed up with an introductory session to Arabic typography and the principles of the Arabic writing system as well as a tour around the history and present landscape of Arabic design in the SWANA region.

By the end of the workshop each participant will design a completely new letterform (digital or physical) informed by their understanding of Arabic as a language and a script. All results will be combined in a zine along with a reflection piece collectively written about the workshop’s learnings and insights and will be translated to Arabic, English and German.

Note: Participants do not need to have a background in spoken or written Arabic.