Koexistenz der Zeichen Multilingual Typography - A Swiss-Hong Kong Workshop



As the world becomes more global, the need to combine typography from different language cultures becomes an increasingly important issue. Multilingual typographic design
issues have more and more impact on visual identities of international institutions, universities, exhibition centres, airports, internet portals and urban districts. The gathering of characters emerging from differing backgrounds are increasingly defining the basics of written communication: basics that have not been really explored yet.

Over the past two weeks, a group of year one Visual Communication Design students explored the issues and possibilities when Chinese and English are combined with each other. Students were invited to observe and document vernacular bilingual typography in Hong Kong, and engaged in lively discussions of the myriad issues that arise when designing with two languages and how these examples reflect Hong Kong’s culture. They imagined new contexts for these written messages and conducted practical experiments that explored new visual concepts and directions. This small exhibition shows the results of this workshop.

This workshop is part of an international research project titled ‘Multilingual Typography/Die Koexistenz der Zeichen/ 文字的並存’, initiated by Design2Context, Institute for Design Research at the School of Art and Design Zurich, Switzerland, headed by Prof. Ruedi Baur. The School of Design at the Hong Kong Polytechnic University is a partner institution for this research project.

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