In Search for a Hybrid Visual Language

24 août 2007
  • 13:10 -14:10

The Dutch government stimulates contact between groups of different backgrounds by establishing a House for Cultural Dialogue in the four main cities of the Netherlands. These ‘houses’ facilitate cultural exchange through exhibitions, performances, literary meetings, film screenings et cetera. The house in Amsterdam concentrates on Islamic culture and is called Marhaba, meaning ‘welcome’.

Marhaba Poster - by Koeweiden Postma

Asked to design a visual identity for Marhaba, Koeweiden Postma started a search for new kind of hybrid visual language, combining Islamic decorative elements with western type in modern, nowadays design. The colourful result gives target-groups a feeling of pride and self-esteem.

The same approach was used in design for the Ramadan Festival. This festival takes the yearly Muslim feast as an opportunity to bring native Dutch people and people of different ethnic backgrounds and religions together. In the reports of the festival the blend of Islamic decorative imagery and western style typography and design was explored further. Chapters in the reports are divided by Latin numbers constructed in Islamic style with a special algorithmic programme.

The work for both Marhaba and Ramadan Festival show how different worlds can go together beautifully in design.