We’re back with a fresh ’n exciting festival!

After the success of All Eyes On Type, we’ll now be delving into the craft of modern Arabic typography and calligraphy. Bringing together amazing designers from diverse and international backgrounds, including those that have recently emigrated to the Netherlands, we explore how type design can contribute to connecting cultures while exchanging some funky ass letters! Afterwards, you can exchange ideas with the best of the best.




Lara Captan and Kristyan Sarkis will give a workshop Arabic hand-lettering together, in a class themed ‘protest lettering’. Then in our other workshop, Dutch-Kurdish calligrapher Hamza will teach you all about the early stages of Arabic calligraphy – where to start? You don’t want to miss this.


Lectures by…

– Tarek Atrissi (LBN/NED)
– Lara Captan (LBN)
– Kristyan Sarkis (LBN)
– Thomas Milo and Mirjam Somers (NED)


We will show you the work of the participating artists…
Hamza Gaderi (NED/IRN)
More to be announced soon…


Arabic Type Fest starts with a lil research to stimulate the intercultural exchange of up ‘n coming designers and artists. Can typography connect on an intercultural level?

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Festival Arabic Type Fest

We’re back with a fresh ’n exciting festival: Arabic Type Fest! After the success of All Eyes On Type, we’ll now be delving into the craft of modern Arabic typography and calligraphy.

Bringing together amazing designers from diverse and international backgrounds, including those that have recently emigrated to the Netherlands, we explore how type design can contribute to connecting cultures while exchanging some funky ass letters! Afterwards, you can exchange ideas with the best of the best.

During the festival there will be several workshops and there will be a lecture evening. Check the timetable for all details!

Courses during the festival..
Arabic Calligraphy
Arabic Lettering

Sign up:


9 SEPT 2017

12.00h – 17.00h
135 euro (115 for students)

Teachers: Lara Captan & Kristyan Sarkis

Arabic Lettering Workshop: Protest (lettering)

ALW is a series of Arabic lettering workshops that introduces participants to the fundaments of the Arabic script to create fun lettering pieces. Every ALW episode takes on a different theme; for the occasion of the Arabic Type Festival 2017, the episode will be Protest.  

In this workshop, participants will learn about the main characteristics that define the Arabic script and letterforms, and will be trained in a methodology to play around with them in order to generate lively results while using protest graphics as a point of inspiration. 



9 SEPT 2017

12.00h – 17.00h
85 euro (70 for students)

Teachers: Hamza Gaderi

In the basis course on Arabic Calligraphy, we’ll discuss the basics of calligraphy. You’ll learn more on the returning elements of the Arabic alphabet and we’ll show you the start of letter contrasts. Furthermore, we will get hands-on with a flat paintbrush and broad nib pen. A whole bunch ‘o techniques to kickstart your calligraphy and typography knowledge! We divided the course in six levels where we combined the letters with matching elements. Learning to understand those elements, the letter contrast and getting used to our tools will bring us to the final work: a word or sentence in Arabic calligraphy.




We always deliver! Come down for lectures by brilliant, worldwide acknowledged designers, such as Lebanese-Dutch Tarek Atrissi, who’s won many international prizes for his graphic work. Tarek will speak about the different approaches to Arabic and Western typographical design and the positive effect letters can have on the perception of the Arabic world. Then, Lebanese designer and typographer Lara Captan will show you her craft. Giving lectures on Arabic script all over the world, she’s been a part of many design events. Lara is driven to develop typography very consciously, creating contemporary typefaces that respect the essential characteristics of the Arabic script. A cultural celebration of the visual!



We’ll show you the works of the participating artists. Two weeks before, and two weeks after the event the works will be shown at Spring House Amsterdam. More information soon to be announced!


Discovering the Arabic letter

Arabic Type Fest starts with a lil research to contribute to the intercultural exchange of up ‘n coming type designers and artists of diverse backgrounds – with a special focus on those who are new to the Netherlands.  We aim to find out more about the current state of the art of Arab type design in the Netherlands, and will explore the many different associations and emotions the Arabic letter form evokes. Can typography connect people on an intercultural level?


Lara Captan

Lara is an independent Arabic type designer & typographer based in Amsterdam. Since 2005, she embarked on a long, silent road to discover the history and mechanics of the Arabic script with one constant aim: The wish to create Arabic typefaces that spring from the graphic heritage of Arabic writing yet transform the past in search for modernity.
Since March 2015, Lara has been designing an Arabic typeface family in the ACE layout engine as well as OpenType with partial support from the Creative Industries Fund NL. She regularly speaks at type conferences and design events around the world such as ISType (Istanbul, 2015) and AtypI (São Paulo, 2015, with Kristyan Sarkis). And in March 2016, Lara has co-founded the Arabic Type Design – Beirut program along with her partner in the project Kristyan Sarkis.

Wanna know more? Get your ticket for her lecture here!


Tarek Atrissi

Lebanese-Dutch Tarek Atrissi is one of most recognized designers across the Arab world. He has gained an international reputation for his graphic work and has received prestigious awards and honors through his design career. He established in 2000 his Netherlands-based design studio, Tarek Atrissi Design (www.atrissi.com). The studio’s typographic and cross cultural design approach produced projects that left a significant influence on the contemporary graphic design landscape in the Middle East.

Born in Beirut, Tarek Atrissi has worked, lived and studied in Lebanon, The Netherlands, Qatar, Dubai, Spain and the United States. He holds a Bachelor’s degree in Graphic Design with distinction from the American University of Beirut; a Masters of Arts in Interactive Multimedia from the Utrecht School of the Arts in Holland; and an MFA in Design entrepreneurship from the School of Visual Arts in New York. He holds as well a postgraduate degree in Typeface Design from the type@cooper program of the Cooper Union New York.

Wanna know more? Get your ticket for his lecture here!



Kristyan sarkis

Kristyan Sarkis is type and graphic designer. Born in Beirut and based in Amsterdam. After receiving his master in Type & Media from the Royal Academy of Art (KABK) in 2010, he started his own design studio in the Netherlands. In 2015, he co-founded TPTQ Arabic, a type foundry specialised in high-quality Arabic fonts. In 2016, he co-launched Arabic Type Design – Beirut, the first educational program dedicated to the subject. He teaches at the Type & Media master since 2015 and the design master at ESAV Marrakech since 2016. His work received several awards including the TDC’s Certificate of Typographic Excellence in 2011, 2012, 2016 and 2017.

Wanna know more? Get your ticket for his workshop here!



Hamza Gaderi

Hamza was born in Iran and started practicing calligraphy from a young age. He learned it from his brother, who was a calligraphy teacher at that time. Afterwards, he kept teaching himself the rest by doing many assignments and even writing political calligraphy on the streets of Iran. What he finds attractive to calligraphy is not only the beauty and the estatics of the Arabic letters, but also the act of doing and the meditative effect of it.

Hamza will give a beginners course on calligraphy, don’t miss out on this, sign up here!



Thomas Milo & Mirjam Somers

Thomas Milo and Mirjam Somers will join the Arabic Type Fest with an inspiring lecture!

Thomas Milo is an academic linguist who, after working as a truck driver in the Middle East and later serving as a Dutch army officer with the UN peace keepers in the Lebanon, founded the company DecoType (along with Mirjam Somers and Peter Somers-who holds a degree in aeronautical engineering and works at Delft Technical University-). Mirjam Somers holds a degree in fine arts from the Gerrit Rietveld Academie in Amsterdam and practised as a carpenter and architectural designer. She is one of the most prominent Arabic typography pioneers whose typefaces won several awards.

DecoType, designers of computer typography, is the team that developed the DecoType Advanced Composition Engine, a remarkable system that advances the art of Arabic typography so much that it has become the yardstick for the industry. During the lecture, you will learn more about this innovative concept and technology that offers a comprehensive solution suitable for broad online application, unshackled to specific corporate operating systems.

You better don’t miss these lectures by the best of the best! There are still some spots available, make sure you save yours via http://www.highontype.nl/agenda/



ILLM, is the pseudonym of Pakistani-Dutch artist Qasim Arif. He experiments with finding contemporary ways of stretching Arabic calligraphy and typography using digital and traditional tools. Inspiration is taken from classical scripts such as Thuluth, as well as the art of tagging and creating letterforms in graffiti.

His works have been published in books such as Arabic Graffiti and Typism 3, and also exhibited in London, Manchester, Dubai, Berlin and Rotterdam.

Qasim plays a major part in our exhibition for Arabic Type Fest. Already to be seen at Spring House . Also we will be doing a live calligraphy painting together with Vincent de Boer. Make sure that you’re there to see him during the festival!


Faisal Al-Sudani

Born in Iraq, studied graphic design, works as a graphic designer. As a designer he had always a special attraction to calligraphy. After following some courses, including one by Mehmet Kleci from Turkey, he’s able to perform in many styles, like Ruqaa, Diwany Jali, Kufi and Thuluth. Living in the Netherlands and doing Arabic calligraphy makes him connect to his roots and therefore personally stronger.

Fun fact: Faisal joined 3 courses with High On Type several years ago.

He will perform live-calligraphy during the festival, drop by at his table and he’ll surprise you with a calligraphy gift!