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Nasri Khattar, A Modernist Typotect

Fighting Illiteracy with Type Design

The second in the series Arabic Design Library by Khatt Books.

It is a concise and highly illustrated bilingual account (in English and Arabic) of the Lebanese architect-typographer (a 'typotect') who passionately strove to democratize knowledge: fighting illiteracy with type design.

Nasri Khattar is a Lebanese architect-typographer (he called himself a typotect) whose work was motivated by the Arab postcolonial project of modernity. He participated in the language and script reform project initiated by the Arabic Language Academy in Cairo in the 1930s. Khattar's work focused on the Arabic script's technological and aesthetic reform. With his reduced set of 30 Unified Arabic letters, he strove to democratize knowledge: making reading in Arabic easier to learn, the production and typesetting of Arabic texts faster and cheaper. He experimented with a modern typographic aesthetic that was appropriate for the technology of the period. He designed several typefaces which were cast as metal type, used for typewriters and phototypesetting machines, and produced in 3D form for signage and game boards. He also designed teaching material for children. His typographic work is presented and discussed in this highly illustrated monograph, taking the reader on a journey through the travails of a determined and creative mind, and placing his life's work within the context of the history of the Arabic alphabet and its typographic developments.

About the Arabic Design Library

Progress is built upon the achievements of predecessors. The Arabic Design Library series focuses on inspiring design achievements from the Middle East and North Africa. It aims to highlight the work of prominent Arab typographers, graphic designers and illustrators. With this series of concise monographs, Khatt Books strives to establish a visual record of Arab design history of the 20th century, and pave the way for critical writing, by Arab authors, on design from the region.

Nasri Khattar, A Modernist Typotect
Fighting Illiteracy with Type Design

Author: Yara Khoury Nammour
Publisher: Khatt Books, Amsterdam
Series: Arabic Design Library 2
ISBN/EAN: 978-94-90939-06-9
Book Design: Huda Smitshuijzen AbiFares & Jad Abou Zeki
176 p, ills colour & bw, 17 x 24 cm, hardback, English, Arabic
€ 28,50

Available on http://www.khattbooks.com

This book is also available in Beirut (Virgin megastore, Papercup, and Librairie Antoine) and Dubai (Virgin, Kinokunia, The Magazine Shop).

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