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Tifinagh type design workshop at the ÉSAV (Marrakech) standard

Before we start drawing in the computer it is worth experimenting with different analog tools to see how they affect letter forms. 2018 started with a stimulating commission: I was invited to give a workshop on Tifinagh type design at the École Supérieure des Arts Visuels (ÉSAV) in Marrakech. 15 students of the Master's of Graphic Design took part in an intense one-week workshop. The goal was to make them familiar with the general principles of type design and to illustrate how those apply to the design of the specific letter forms of Tifinagh. We also looked into the history of the alphabet, tried different tools to experiment how they affect the shapes of its letters, got acquainted with specific ...

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ATypI 2016 (Warsaw):
“A Typographic Maghribi Trialogue” lecture standard

The "Qandus team" on stage at the Academy of Fine Arts in Warsaw. On screen Qandus Tifinagh dark. Image: Mariko Takagi. Few days after the presentation in Amsterdam Kristyan Sarkis, Laura Meseguer and myself came to the ATypI conference in Warsaw to talk about our experience designing Qandus, one of the type families developed during the Typographic Matchmaking in the Maghrib project. We called the talk "A Typographic Maghribi Trialogue" as a way to underline the intense and continuous exchange among the three cultures and writing traditions –Arabic, Latin and Tifinagh– that this project has called for, but also to recall the necessary respect for each one's peculiarities and specific features. In my view, our's was one of the projects that best ...

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Tifinagh typography workshop at the IRCAM (Rabat) standard

It is a pleasure to help such hard-working students. Image: Brahim Boucheikha. It was a delightful feeling to go back to the IRCAM (The Royal Institute for the Amazigh Culture) to give this workshop about Tifinagh type design with Brahim Boucheikha. I still remember my research trip to Morocco in 2014, when I was working on my dissertation, and how I was welcomed and helped at the IRCAM. This time, I was really pleased to give back my knowledge about typography to five enthusiastic Moroccan students. The workshop took place from July 18th to 22nd. After an intense week we were able to present a bunch of new projects that will certainly enrich the typographic scene of the Tifinagh when they are eventually completed. The projects aim to ...

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Talk on Tifinagh at the 7CIT (Valencia) standard

I was very pleased to talk about the Tifinagh script in the 7th International Conference of Typography in Valencia. This time the focus was in its cultural, social and political aspects. The standardization of the Amazigh language implied the choice of a script to write it. The election of the Tifinagh rather than the Arabic and the Latin was a controversial issue which, to some extent, remains nowadays. It illustrates visibly the political implications of a writing system in multilingual/multicultural environments. Other issues like the need to adapt an ancient alphabet to the new technologies, but above all, to the needs of a mostly Tifinagh-illiterate population in order to facilitate the learning and the use of the script in common life raised ...

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Talk on Tifinagh at Face Forward 2015 (Dublin) standard

It seems that the end of this year is going to be intense. I am really glad to announce my talk about the Tifinagh script in the Face Forward conference in Dublin. I'll talk about the normalisation and unification of the Amazigh language, as well as the renaissance and standardisation of its original script, the Tifinagh alphabet, in Morocco, where it coexists with the Arabic and the Latin scripts. The practice of typeface design in this peculiar context raises extremely interesting and uncommon questions, namely: Which are the criteria to define a unified and manageable character set from more than 20 dialects each one with diverse peculiarities and uses? How to translate the shapes of ancient carved letters into digital media? How ...

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Talk about multiscript design at Typomad 2015 (Madrid) standard

This was one of the nicest surprises of last month. While I was in Marrakech taking part in the TMM3 project, I got an email from Pablo Gámez (Chulotype / Typomad) inviting me to give a talk in Typomad 2015 about multiscript design, focusing on the project I developed during my Master's Degree at the University of Reading, and more specifically on the Tifinagh script. I gladly accepted the invitation. It will be a pleasure to share stage and experiences with Jean Baptiste Levée, Toshi Omagari, Sol Matas, Raul García, Ismael González, Julia Kahl, Jesús Morentín, Diego Dier and Damià Rotger among others. You will find all the information about the conferences, workshops, exhibitions and tickets here: See you at Typomad ...

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