Across borders

Across Borders is an exhibition, an online shop and a set of conferences organized by Mayúscula, originally celebrated under the frame of the Barcelona Design Week 2017 and also exhibited in Faro, Portugal, during the 8ET – Typography Meeting, organized by the School of Education and Communication of the University of Algarve, on November 03-04. The concept is based on design as a tool to break down borders and transform society for the better, exploring the boundaries of the world we live in though design and visual communication.

Creative values are humanitarian values
Ideas, curiosity and dreams need no passports, papers or travel permits. Ideas born in one place can have massive impact on the other side of the planet. One person’s curiosity can have the power to change the course of millions of other people’s lives, globally. This fluid transmission of culture and knowledge builds the world we live in. And, for the creative community, it drives our work. So, if we support and welcome the free circulation of ideas, how can we stand back and ignore the rights and needs for greater movement of people in times of need? With Across Borders, by showing the power of blending and transforming ideas, we want to demonstrate our commitment to those now seeking integration into other cultures, refugees.

A participatory and co-creative process
This poster exhibition — a cross-cultural and multilingual dialogue among 16 designers of different origins — aims to stir thoughts on the individual versus the collective, local versus global, coexistence among people, the dialogue between styles, alphabets, countries of birth, and the immense problem of immigration and displaced people, relocation and further adaptation.

Their creative work has the intention of celebrating miscegenation by showing the strength of fusion and transformation of ideas, demonstrating their commitment to those who seek to integrate into other cultures, refugees.

An entire world in movement
The sale’s benefits of prints and books will go to displaced refugee kids through Save The Children. Today, more than 65 million people live in continuous displacement. An entire world in movement. Never before in human history has the earth seen so many involuntary travelers. Just last year, in 2016, 31 million people were forced to abandon their homes and move away in other direction on account of violence, hunger or harrowing climate conditions.
The fact of moving to survive collides head-on with another violent reality: the reality of the wall. Never before in our history have we lived in a world so divided and compartmentalized. So fragmented. We live in a complex labyrinth of borders and demarcations. Every year, we produce half a million tons of barbwire—that is eight million kilometers of fences, or enough to circle the earth 200 times.

Posters

Foreign Policy (Singapore)
ABCDEFG

ABCDEFG is a question as well as an expression of the eventual confluence of cultures, languages and ideals as the world gets smaller due to the advent of the internet and social media and the growing accessibility of air travel. Will we end up speaking a myriad mix of languages? Or will our languages come together in a sort of melting pot and evolve into a new language?

Tsung Green (Taiwan)
Strokes - World

My creativity visual element came from the eight strokes of Chinese calligraphy. Eight strokes wander among the black modern geometric framework, a symbol of Eastern and Western cultural exchanges, attempting to produce diverse and dynamic visual effects.

By buying a poster you agree to our following Terms and Conditions.

Size: 400 mm x 500 mm
Paper: Hahnehmule 300 gr
Printing: Silkscreen 2 Colors

Wael Morcos (Lebanon)
Borderless

Beyond manmade frontiers
and separation walls,
Beyond the confines of delimitation zones
and forced resettlement,
Beyond cultural realities
retraced by colonial conquests,
Beyond restricted mobility
and the politics of oppression,
Beyond blue lines, red lines
and imagined outlines,
Borderless is limitless.

Edenspiekermann (Singapore)
This Cannot lah!

This Cannot lah! chewing gum wrapper is a reference to a typical Singaporean law, Chapter 57 of the Control of Manufacture Act, which prohibits the import, distribution and selling of chewing gum in Singapore. Singapore has often been ridiculed over this legal curiosity, but it is still in place and is enforced. Cannot lah! is an example of the use of colloquial Singapore English, Singlish, which is strongly discouraged in Singaporean schools at a governmental level, as it is believed to hinder the proper learning of standard English. Many Singlish words and expressions were recently added to the Oxford English Dictionary, however, giving the local language a more serious international status. Both the chewing gum ban and the official stance of the Singapore government towards the use of Singlish may be fairly harmless limitations of freedom in Singapore, but they represent much bigger limitations of free expression, which are not often talked about openly.

By buying a poster you agree to our following Terms and Conditions.

Size: 400 mm x 500 mm
Paper: Hahnehmule 300 gr
Printing: Silkscreen 2 Colors

Tarek Atrissi (Lebanon)
Typographic Connections

We break borders by creating connections. This typographic piece celebrates the connections created between designers through creativity using the word “tawassul” in Arabic, a symbolic word that means “to draw close, to connect, to communicate”.

Mayúscula (Spain)
Coexistence

The basic geometric shapes are a metaphor for the delicate encounter between different cultures, languages, ethnicities, graphic styles, personalities and typographies.

By buying a poster you agree to our following Terms and Conditions.

Size: 400 mm x 500 mm
Paper: Hahnehmule 300 gr
Printing: Silkscreen 2 Colors

Bahia Shehab (Lebanon)
No to blood

“A Thousand Times No” started as an art installation in 2010 and evolved into a street campaign during the Egyptian uprising in 2011, saying no to dictators, no to military rule and no to violence.

Eyeson Type (Taiwan)
The word univers

The universe is all of time and space and everything in them. The word “universe” in Chinese first appeared around 330 BCE. The character “宇” means space, and the character “宙” means time. Even though the word “universe” emerged in different eras and circumstances in the East and the West, the exploration of the unknown cosmos inspires the letter and meaning.

By buying a poster you agree to our following Terms and Conditions.

Size: 400 mm x 500 mm
Paper: Hahnehmule 300 gr
Printing: Silkscreen 2 Colors

Debakir (Lebanon)
I want to bury your sun

Citizens of some countries need to endure a tedious process to acquire permission to cross borders. Permissions are sometimes granted and other times rejected. The designer voices his frustration against the concept of borders and the discrimination that comes with them by invoking a curse in Armenian that literally translates as “I want to bury your sun”. The wish is for the sun to set down on an era where borders can inflict suffering upon people.

Anna Kulachek (Ukraine)
Untitled

Having lived in Ukraine, Russia, Italy and the United States, where I was surrounded by people from all over the world, I felt like I was living in a big global family, in which borders did not matter. We are the same. Borders are just political weapons.

By buying a poster you agree to our following Terms and Conditions.

Size: 400 mm x 500 mm
Paper: Hahnehmule 300 gr
Printing: Silkscreen 2 Colors

TPTQ Arabic (Lebanon)
Resistance

This piece is about the resistance of all minorities, all people and/or groups of people who experience different forms of social, economic or political injustice. It speaks in their name to say “we are here / نحن‭ ‬هنا” and invites them to join their scattered efforts in a louder, more united resistance.

Andreu Balius (Spain)
Vocabulary for a world without border

Typography is a tool for conveying messages. Letters are shapes that help us form ideas. In our world, there are some important words that should be written and said loudly.

By buying a poster you agree to our following Terms and Conditions.

Size: 400 mm x 500 mm
Paper: Hahnehmule 300 gr
Printing: Silkscreen 2 Colors

Wael Morcos (Lebanon)
Borderless

Beyond manmade frontiers
and separation walls,
Beyond the confines of delimitation zones
and forced resettlement,
Beyond cultural realities
retraced by colonial conquests,
Beyond restricted mobility
and the politics of oppression,
Beyond blue lines, red lines
and imagined outlines,
Borderless is limitless.

Bahia Shehab (Lebanon)
No to blood

“A Thousand Times No” started as an art installation in 2010 and evolved into a street campaign during the Egyptian uprising in 2011, saying no to dictators, no to military rule and no to violence.

By buying a poster you agree to our following Terms and Conditions.

Size: 400 mm x 500 mm
Paper: Hahnehmule 300 gr
Printing: Silkscreen 2 Colors

TPTQ Arabic (Lebanon)
Resistance

This piece is about the resistance of all minorities, all people and/or groups of people who experience different forms of social, economic or political injustice. It speaks in their name to say “we are here /نحن‭ ‬ هنا” and invites them to join their scattered efforts in a louder, more united resistance.

Debatir (Lebanon)
I want to bury your sun

Citizens of some countries need to endure a tedious process to acquire permission to cross borders. Permissions are sometimes granted and other times rejected. The designer voices his frustration against the concept of borders and the discrimination that comes with them by invoking a curse in Armenian that literally translates as “I want to bury your sun”. The wish is for the sun to set down on an era where borders can inflict suffering upon people.

By buying a poster you agree to our following Terms and Conditions.

Size: 400 mm x 500 mm
Paper: Hahnehmule 300 gr
Printing: Silkscreen 2 Colors

Anna Kulachek (Ukraine)
Untitled

Having lived in Ukraine, Russia, Italy and the United States, where I was surrounded by people from all over the world, I felt like I was living in a big global family, in which borders did not matter. We are the same. Borders are just political weapons.

Edenspiekermann (Singapore)
This Cannot Lah!

This Cannot lah! chewing gum wrapper is a reference to a typical Singaporean law, Chapter 57 of the Control of Manufacture Act, which prohibits the import, distribution and selling of chewing gum in Singapore. Singapore has often been ridiculed over this legal curiosity, but it is still in place and is enforced. Cannot lah! is an example of the use of colloquial Singapore English, Singlish, which is strongly discouraged in Singaporean schools at a governmental level, as it is believed to hinder the proper learning of standard English. Many Singlish words and expressions were recently added to the Oxford English Dictionary, however, giving the local language a more serious international status. Both the chewing gum ban and the official stance of the Singapore government towards the use of Singlish may be fairly harmless limitations of freedom in Singapore, but they represent much bigger limitations of free expression, which are not often talked about openly.

By buying a poster you agree to our following Terms and Conditions.

Size: 400 mm x 500 mm
Paper: Hahnehmule 300 gr
Printing: Silkscreen 2 Colors

Hey (Spain)
Limits

Drawn borders as a symbolization of erected fences and walls around world. Physical barriers against people, freedom and dreams in 65 countries, including Turkey, which is now trying to protect itself from the risk of terrorism.

Mayúscula (Spain)
Coexistence

The basic geometric shapes are a metaphor for the delicate encounter between different cultures, languages, ethnicities, graphic styles, personalities and typographies.

By buying a poster you agree to our following Terms and Conditions.

Size: 400 mm x 500 mm
Paper: Hahnehmule 300 gr
Printing: Silkscreen 2 Colors

Fontsmith (United Kingdom)
Aldrin

We are inspired by the idea of “borders”, and our typeface, FS Aldrin, is inspired by how Buzz Aldrin’s mission was to break borders and explore uncharted territories.

Eyeson Type (Taiwan)
The word universe

The universe is all of time and space and everything in them. The word “universe” in Chinese first appeared around 330 BCE. The character “宇” means space, and the character “宙” means time. Even though the word “universe” emerged in different eras and circumstances in the East and the West, the exploration of the unknown cosmos inspires the letter and meaning.

By buying a poster you agree to our following Terms and Conditions.

Size: 400 mm x 500 mm
Paper: Hahnehmule 300 gr
Printing: Silkscreen 2 Colors

Anna Kulachek (Ukraine)
Untitled

Having lived in Ukraine, Russia, Italy and the United States, where I was surrounded by people from all over the world, I felt like I was living in a big global family, in which borders did not matter. We are the same. Borders are just political weapons.

Tarek Atrissi (Lebanon)
Connections

We break borders by creating connections. This typographic piece celebrates the connections created between designers through creativity using the word “tawassul” in Arabic, a symbolic word that means “to draw close, to connect, to communicate”.

By buying a poster you agree to our following Terms and Conditions.

Size: 400 mm x 500 mm
Paper: Hahnehmule 300 gr
Printing: Silkscreen 2 Colors

Andreu Balius (Spain)
Vocabulary for a world without borders

Typography is a tool for conveying messages. Letters are shapes that help us form ideas. In our world, there are some important words that should be written and said loudly.

Mayúscula (Spain)
Coexistence

The basic geometric shapes are a metaphor for the delicate encounter between different cultures, languages, ethnicities, graphic styles, personalities and typographies.

By buying a poster you agree to our following Terms and Conditions.

Size: 400 mm x 500 mm
Paper: Hahnehmule 300 gr
Printing: Silkscreen 2 Colors

TPTQ Arabic (Lebanon)
Resistance

This piece is about the resistance of all minorities, all people and/or groups of people who experience different forms of social, economic or political injustice. It speaks in their name to say “we are here / نحن‭ ‬هنا” and invites them to join their scattered efforts in a louder, more united resistance.

Fontsmith (UK)
Aldrin

We are inspired by the idea of ‘borders’ and our typeface FS Aldrin, how Buzz Aldrin’s mission was to break borders and explore unchartered territories.

By buying a poster you agree to our following Terms and Conditions.

Size: 400 mm x 500 mm
Paper: Hahnehmule 300 gr
Printing: Silkscreen 2 Colors

Hey (Spain)
Limits

Drawn borders as a symbolization of erected fences and walls around world. Physical barriers against people, freedom and dreams in 65 countries, including Turkey, which is now trying to protect itself from the risk of terrorism.

Wissam Shawkat (Iraq)
Calligraforms

As an artist who fled his country due to the worsening situation and knowledge of the impending war, the Iraq invasion of 2003, I designed this piece, which represents a metaphor for my love of letter forms as cities without borders.

By buying a poster you agree to our following Terms and Conditions.

Size: 400 mm x 500 mm
Paper: Hahnehmule 300 gr
Printing: Silkscreen 2 Colors

Yawn Yu (Korea)
경계 Gyeonggye

The Korean word for border is “경계”
(gyeonggye). Gyeonggye is also a homophone that means “to guard”. The word naturally reminds us of both meanings, as it depicts the current situation of Korea as a divided country and my personal experience in the Republic of Korea Air Force.

Hey (Spain)
Limits

Drawn borders as a symbolization of erected fences and walls around world. Physical barriers against people, freedom and dreams in 65 countries, including Turkey, which is now trying to protect itself from the risk of terrorism.

By buying a poster you agree to our following Terms and Conditions.


Size: 400 mm x 500 mm
Paper: Hahnehmule 300 gr
Printing: Silkscreen 2 Colors

Exhibition

“What makes human beings special is not our intelligence; it is our imagination”.

Participants

Mayúscula invited 16 design studios and graphic artists to donate a black ink artwork with the theme “Design that breaks borders”, which were later overlayed with color in a cross-cultural limited edition silkscreen print. Participants include Hey Studio (Spain), Edenspiekermann (Singapore), Tarek Atrissi (Lebanon), Wissam Shawkat (Iraq), Foreign Policy (Singapore), Anna Kulachek (Ukraine), Wael Morcos (Lebanon), Andreu Balius (Barcelona), Bahia Shehab (Lebanon), Mayúscula (Spain), Tseng Green (Taiwan), Fontsmith (UK), Kristyan Sarkis (Lebanon), Yaewan Yu (Corea), Khajag Apelian (Lebanon) and Eyeson Type (Taiwan). It is surprising the complementarity of some posters, which seem to have been thought out together.

Andreu Balius is a type designer and digital punchcutter based in Barcelona (Spain). He designs retail and custom typefaces at Type Republic.com and has been awarded with several Excellence in Type Design for his type design work. He is a member of AGI (Alliance Graphique Internationale), TDC (Type Directors Club) and ATypI (Association Typographique Internationale).

Anna Kulachek — graphic designer, originally from Ukraine. Graduate of Higher Academic School of Graphic Design in Moscow.

After graduating school in 2008 and till 2012 Anna worked as an Art Director at a larger design company in Moscow, Russia. In 2012 Anna was awarded residency at Fabrica, a communications research center at Benetton in Italy. For the past three years Anna works as an art director at Strelka Institute for Media, Architecture and Design, where she in charge of all visualization of public and education programs at the institute. Anna also acts as an art director for the publishing house at the Institute — Strelka Press.

Bahia Shehab (Beirut, 1977) is an award-winning artist, designer and art historian based in Cairo. Her street art has been on display in museums, galleries and streets around the world, and was featured in the 2015 documentary Nefertiti’s Daughters. She is the recipient of many international recognitions and awards, which include the UNESCO-Sharjah Prize for Arab Culture (2016), Prince Claus Award (2016), TED Senior fellowship (2016), BBC 100 Women list (2014) among others. Bahia is associate professor of design and founder of the graphic design program at the American University in Cairo where she developed a full design curriculum focused on the visual culture of the Arab world. Her publications include A Thousand Times NO: The Visual History of Lam-Alif.

Khajag Apelian is a lettering, type and graphic designer. Having grown up between Dubai and Beirut, and being raised in an Armenian family, Khajag has an affinity for different languages and writing systems, which he has applied to the development of typefaces in many scripts, including Arabic, Armenian and Latin.

Edenspiekermann is a digital design agency with offices in Amsterdam, Berlin, Los Angeles, San Francisco and Singapore. Work with us to radically strengthen your brand in today’s world. We design meaningful, smart and seductive digital brand experiences so that your customers become your loyal followers.

We are driven by content, meaning and purpose. We don’t decorate the surface; every brand has a unique story to tell. It is our passion to discover these stories and create online brand experiences that add real value to our client’s business. Therefore we have to go in deep, we question early assumptions and we work with real content from the start.

Joe (Hsuan-Hao) Chang graduated with a MA in Type & Media from KABK Den Haag in 2012. Before Type & Media, he worked as a type designer in Dynacomware for two years, which later developed into a passion for multilingual type design. In 2014, he founded Eyeson Type to provide type-related design and bilingual typographic matchmaking consultancy in Taipei, Taiwan.

Fontsmith is a leading boutique type foundry with a complete font design and production service. Founded in 1997 and known for creating fonts with a distinctively human character, Fontsmith is a truly international team of designers working from a studio in central London.

Phil is a type designer with over fourteen years experience in the design, build and engineering of fonts for global brands, working in collaboration with leading design studios and ad agencies worldwide. As Type Design Director at Fontsmith, Phil creates original typeface designs and manages a team of type designers in the studio to create, build and deliver high quality fonts for the Fontsmith font library.

Foreign Policy is a design bureau and think tank based in Singapore that crafts, realizes and evolves experiences with a creative and strategic deployment of ideas narrated by various appropriate media. Helmed by Creative Directors Yah-Leng Yu and Arthur Chin, the group of idea makers and story tellers is based in Singapore, independently owned and creatively motivated.

Yah-Leng was formally trained at the Art Institute of Boston before moving to New York City where her creative career blossomed. In 2007, she moved back to the tropical island of Singapore where she co-founded Foreign Policy Design Group. Her works have been also recognized and honored by numerous awards, accolades and publications.

Hey is a graphic design and illustration studio founded in 2007. Based in Barcelona, Hey works on finding graphic solutions according to the needs of clients, big and small. These have included Apple, Monocle, MACBA, Vanity Fair, Penguin Random House and Vodafone.

They work mainly with design and illustration making brand identities and editorial projects. However, Hey is open to any type of creative project – artist’s installations and licensing also make up part of their portfolio.

Their style is defined by geometry, colour, typography and bold graphics. A stamp which they carry over into their personal projects, some of which allow them to break down barriers and find new ways of doing things.

In 2014 they opened HeyShop a place where they can share with the public their personal creations. Their designs and illustrations are brought to posters, tote bags, books and notebooks.

Works at an IT company as a UI designer and spare personal time for graphic design. Jaewan Yu was born and raised in Korea, and served in the air force mandatorily for 2 years as two Koreas are under ceasefire period.

Mayúscula is a multilingual branding and design agency in Barcelona, founded by Rocío Martinavarro.

Brands need a big-thinking partner to stand out. That’s why they are called Mayúscula, Spanish for capital letter. Because they believe in going further, helping brands maximize their full potential, entering new markets hand in hand, with a European design strategy team sensitive to multicultural branding.

They have designed in more than 10 languages, including Chinese, Arabic, Russian, Azerbaijani and Japanese, for multinationals and start-ups such as Formula 1 (Azerbaijan), Agility Logistics and Zeri Crafts (Kuwait), Phoenix Village (China), or The World Bank Group (Africa).

Mayúscula’s work has been recognized by D&AD Awards, Dubai Lynx or Laus. They often lecture in different design schools, and participate in design events like OFFF, Blanc, or –ING Dubai.

Tarek Atrissi is a Lebanese / Dutch Graphic designer and typographer running his internationally acknowledged design studio based in Barcelona (Tarek Atrissi Design).

He has received international awards for his work, including the Type Directors Club New York, The Adobe Design Achievement awards, and the Design for Asia Award, among others. Atrissi’s clients include Apple, Mathaf Museum of Modern Art and the V&A Museum in London. He is the founder of www.ArabicTypography.com, an Arabic Type Foundry designing and developing Arabic Typefaces for branding needs. He was recently selected as one of the most 100 most influential Lebanese figures around the world.

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, together with Peter Bilak, he founded TPTQ Arabic, a type foundry specialised in high-quality Arabic fonts. In 2016, together with Lara Captan, he 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.

Tseng Green, graphic designer, Taipei, Taiwan.
Works have been included in Viction:ary, Design 360°, APD- magazines and other Asian Pacific Design Yearbooks. Recently selected for 2016 Mexico Poster Biennale (14th BICM).

Currently working as a freelancer, specializing in graphic design, including CIS, VI, branding, book cover, magazine layout, art and cultural performance, exhibition’s identity design.

Wissam Shawkat, based in Dubai, is a conceptually motivated artist with mastery in Arabic calligraphy. Born in 1974 in Basra (Iraq), he was first introduced to Arabic calligraphy at the age of 10 by his primary school teacher Muhammad Ridha Suhail. Shawkat is largely self-taught in the rigorous medium, attaining mastery through book research, visits to various masters, museum and library collections throughout the region.

He has received numerous prizes for his calligraphy and has participated as both an artist and committee member at multiple editions of the Sharjah Calligraphy Biennial and the Dubai International Calligraphy Exhibition. Letters of Love, his 2011 solo exhibition at Reed Space in New York, introduced a global audience to a series of contemporary compositions.

His style, which is referred to as Calligraform, focuses on the precise forms of the letters, but also the abstract shapes generated by examining the geometric spaces inside and outside of their structures.

Originally from Lebanon, Wael is a graphic designer who uses language to investigate the formal qualities of words and their complex meanings. He is also interested in the moments where communication fails and uses its shortcomings to mine new ways to reach out and to tell stories.

After receiving his MFA from Rhode Island School of Design (RISD) in 2013 he moved to New York where he worked with 2×4, MTWTF, Commercial Type and Base Design. Wael has been named Print Magazine’s 15 under 30 and was named a Young Gun by the Art Director’s Club.

Talks

Date: 07—06—2017
Time: 19:00 — 21:00
Place: ROC 35. Carrer de Roc Boronat, nº 35, 8
08005 Barcelona
Price: free entrance

The first set of conferences were given under the frame of the Barcelona Design Week in Roc 35. Rocío Martinavarro from Mayúscula, Tarek Atrissi, Andreu Balius from Type Republic and the photojournalist Daniel Burgui Iguzkiza talked about their creative work through their own cross-cultural experience.

If you’d like to organize an Across Borders edition, in or out of Spain, or support the project with a donation, let us know your ideas!

Collaborators

Thanks to

Location

Opening & talks

June 07
ROC 35

Passatge Mas Oliver 8.
08005 Barcelona
tel: +34 933 208 050
mail: info@roc35.com

Exhibition

June 10 / June 16
Mayúscula

Passatge Ferrer i Vidal, 12. 1º
08005 Barcelona
tel: +34 932 217 840
mail: nihao@mayuscula.es

Opening & talks

June 07
ROC 35

Passatge Mas Oliver 8.
08005 Barcelona
tel: +34 933 208 050
mail: info@roc35.com

Exhibition

June 10 / June 16
Mayúscula

Passatge Ferrer i Vidal, 12. 1º
08005 Barcelona
tel: +34 932 217 840
mail: nihao@mayuscula.es