Publishers on design and visual culture of the Middle East and North Africa

The Arabic Font Specimen Book is the first overview of Arabic type available on the market. The book also provides historical information, guidelines for various applications using (dual-script) type and guidelines for type designers. Each type specimen has concise historical information about its designers, technical specifications and manufacturers.

‘There are several drawbacks to creating a complete overview of all fonts available in the Arabic script. Though Arabic has a rich tradition in calligraphy, it barely has a significant one in the field of typography. There is very little documentation about Arabic fonts which is why it is not always easy to find the design or production source of the fonts offered on the market and/or their technical specifications. The goal of this publication is to give adequate help in selecting Arabic fonts for use in print and other media. Each text font is shown in the size and the format that corresponds with three archetypical applications of printed type: one sample in display size, one sample in an average text size, and one in a very small size used for captions or in business forms. These samples cover in a concise way the extremes of font use in print. Nowadays text does not appear in print only, but is also produced to be read from computer screens. The appearance of a font under these circumstances can be best judged on the final display. However, it is highly likely that if a font is legible at very small sizes it will also remain legible when used on low resolution computer screens. Fonts that are only suitable for display text are shown solely in the display option.’ (Excerpt from the introduction text)