NESHAN, The Iranian Graphic Design Magazine

Member of International Council of Design ico-D

English | فارسی

Neshan 33

Spring 2015

Type and Typography Issue

With the contributions of Majid Abbasi, Pegah Ahmadi, Pouya Ahmadi, Robert Appleton, Bavand Behpoor, Philip Burton, Hirbod Lotfian, Behzad Motebaheri, Erik Spiekermann

Typography: Function or form?

Majid Abbasi

Writing and reading are insep-arable parts of language. We view words as various shapes com-posed of interlocking letters, and this is how they transfer meaning. Whether we talk, read, or write, we are communicating. Thus, typography — which has a visual  dimension in addition to literary and written aspects — inherently deals with communication. In his famous work, An Essay on Typography, Eric Gill writes, “Letters are signs for sounds … Letters are not pictures or representations. Picture writing and hieroglyphics are not letters from our.”... > more


Should Architects Understand Type?

Erik Spiekermann

Demi - gods in black, some architects treat type as a redundant tool and graphic designers as inconsequential. But the relationship between architecture and graphic design has deep roots. Doctors, especially surgeons, always top the list when people are asked what profession they respect most. In Germany, we call doctors “demi - gods in white” as they often have the final say when it comes to life and death. Many architects, meanwhile, consider themselves masters of everything not made by God. There are those who simply supply buildings... > more

Iranian Contemporary Design

Reza Abedini’s Universe

Bavand Behpoor

1. The word hesitates. It looks under its feet and refuses to descend to the page. When it finally lands on the piece of paper, it runs around anxiously; hangs from one edge and then jumps down. It is afraid. Rightfully so. It has learn-ed through experience that Abedini will gut it, cook it like a stew, inject into it the meaning he wishes, attach a ring to its leg and release it into nature. He shall record on paper the path along which it runs. The word knows that this time it is not confronted with a writer who hunts words. This time, the ... > more


Now is the Time for Change!

Hirbod Lotfian

Damoon Khanjanzadeh is a well-known typeface designer. He, whose dreams are even filled with letters, has created an admirable typeface and has named it after his newborn daughter, Diba. Diba is a display typeface with particular, unique functions. The profits of selling Diba are donated to cancer-stricken children supported by the MAHAK charity institute, in gratitude for Damoon’s precious little child. Now, the toddler Diba is rapidly growing and is on her way to bear fruit.  Love at First Sight! A good design is like the display window... > more


Neshan Amongst 100 Classic Graphic Design Journals

Pegah Ahmadi

Many graphic design journals we have taken for granted provided progressive content for their time. Even if many seem utterly conventional now, they have helped to shape the discipline. 100 Classic Graphic Design Journals surveys a unique collection of the most influential magazines devoted to graphic design, advertising and typography. In this compendium - style book, Steven Heller and Jason Godfrey remind us of a century in print design history, and chart the rise of graphic design from a necessary sideline to the printing industry to... > more

Design Today

Future Type: A Semiotic Turn

Pouya Ahmadi

The spoken language — hence its written representation — is first and foremost a communication system whereby emotions ( per Plato’s and later on Rousseau’s argument ) or logical thoughts ( per Kant’s debate ) are conveyed. Type — as a mechanical form of reproducible letterforms — is merely a set of symbols, therefore bound to the regimes of semiotics. Its anatomy — albeit universally agreed upon — is inherent in its very basic shapes. Yet, it has transformed and overhauled over time. Jan Tschichold’s 1929 Universal Alphabet portrays... > more

Face to Face

Regardless of Technology: Face to Face with Matthew Carter

Robert Appleton

B: You have such a deep history in typography… your father… your family… I don’t have that background in design, it just came to me somehow…. M: Yes. My Dad was a typographer and a historian of printing typography, and I did meet a lot of people of his generation in the field. That was interesting.  He wasn’t the kind of father who pushed me or my brother to follow in his footsteps. He would have said, “Well, you should do something different because the conversation will be more interesting at the dinner table…”  B: As you grew into your... > more


Musing at an Exhibition

Philip Burton

Between 6 May and 29 September, 2014 a retrospective of the work of Wolfgang Weingart was exhibited at the Museum for Design (Museum für Gestaltung) in Zürich Switzerland. Weingart enjoys an international reputation as a typographer and a teacher of typography at the School of Design in Basel, Switzerland. The exhibition was curated by Barbara Junod of the museum staff in consultation with the artist. I was a student at the Basel School of Design from 1970 through 1975 as a member of the Weiterbildungsklasse für Grafik, an advanced class that... > more


Totally Iranian; The 5th Color Iranian Typography Exhibitions

Behzad Motebaheri

What is typography? Now, barely anyone bothers to find an answer to this question. Typo-graphy exists; it is justified and legitimate, and is used as an approach and method for creating works of graphic design. However, things were not the same in the winter of 2003. The Blind Owl, the first Iranian typo-graphy exhibition, mounted in the Seyhoun Gallery, displayed both the posters of supporters and critics of typography in an inconsistent way. In the preface to the exhibition’s book, its organizer, The Fifth Color, tries to conceal — or ... > more


Hands up… A Review of Erik Brandt’s Typographic Works

Majid Abbasi

Ten years ago, at Virginia  Commonwealth University ( VCU ) of Doha, I met a tall, pleasant, and highly sociable young man who had recently begun working there as an Assistant Professor of Graphic Design. In no time, Erik Brandt, current chair of Minneapolis College of Art and Design ( MCAD ), was recognized by the international design society as a typographic designer. In 2012, he became a member of Alliance Graphique Internationale ( AGI ), and in 2015 he held a chair in the design department.  Erik spent his childhood and adolescence with... > more