Mashrebiya Font Competition: Phase I

The Jury's Report

The jury has received 14 typeface design proposals from 11 different individual designers or design teams working in collaboration. After long deliberations, the jury has written a brief report and made its selections for the shortlist of Phase II of the competition.

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Underneath the list of the applicants and the name of their fonts.

1. Shahab Siavash: KayKhosrow Typeface
2. Abdelrahman Farhat: Mashrabiya Typeface
Arman Khorramak: Ebtekar Font Family
Aaqifa Altaf & Maha Al-Sulaiti: Circuit Typeface & Zawiyya Typeface
Mark van Wageningen (Novo Typo): Novo Typo Typeface
6. Alaa Safadi: Al-Mathni Typeface
7. Rana Bacha, Karen El Haddad, Ash Wadi: Crane Typeface & Faisal Typeface and Faisal
8. Thierry Fétiveau with two fonts: Azmar Typeface and Anzal Typeface
9. Asieh Dehghani & Peter van der Weij: Angle Typeface
10. Qasim Haidar: Mashrebiya Typeface
11. Chourouk Zarkaoui & Alex Fergusson: ONESEVEN KM Typeface

The jury notes that although this was a type design competition aimed at experienced type designers, most entries came from students in various phases of their studies. This made it hard for the jury to award final type designs, because they must qualify as ‘top level type designs’. This level of professionalism is rarely reached at students or early professional level.

The selection of the jury is based on two different criteria: one that judges whether the design proposal fits within the brief and second the design quality of the proposal. It has become quite clear that all designers have struggled with the product design aspect of a Mashrebyia font. Mashrebyia screens have to be produced using the proposed typefaces. Regrettably, none of the entries met de brief in full. Only one designer showed a basic understanding of the requirements of the brief. His proposals did not however meet the level of transparency (around 50%) that is required. All the other proposals effectively didn’t propose fonts with which Mashrebyia screens can be produced.
    On the basis of the above only one designer is invited to take part in the second phase. His name is Thierry Fétiveau. Thierry will receive from the jury more specific instructions and suggestions to enhance his chance to have his font proposal awarded and produced.

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On the aspect of design quality, the judges were more positive. That is to say, none of the proposals reached at this stage the required top professional level, but that can only be judged after a complete font file is issued. However, some of the designs looked innovative, fresh and promising.
    On the basis of the design quality of their typeface design proposal, one design team is invited to revise and resubmit their design concept for the first phase. The team is Chourouk Zarkaoui & Alex Fergusson. Their current design proposal did not meet the brief on the production level, but the jury decided to give them a chance to modify their proposals in such a way that their typeface design can be used to produce Mashrebiya screens. In case these designers accept the invitation the jury will reevaluate their modified and take a decision on whether or not they can go forward to the second phase.

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