20th-century Persian newspaper types: investigating the design process

An exhibition
20 March – 17 May 2019

Curated by Borna Izadpanah & Fiona Ross

Department of Typography & Graphic Communication
University of Reading 

This exhibition explores the design process of the most significant twentieth-century Persian newspaper types, which were designed by the Iranian designer Hossein Haghighi and the British designer Tim Holloway for the Iranian newspapers, Ettela’at and Kayhan. These types, which continue to enjoy immense popularity, have played an instrumental role in defining the identity of contemporary Persian typography and in shaping Iranian typographic taste.

In tracking the design process, the exhibition provides a rare opportunity to view original sketches, finished artwork and trial proofs of the designs, alongside uses of the designs in widely disseminated publications. Original correspondence and supplementary documentation also on display reveal information regarding the sources of inspiration for the designs and the impact of different technologies on their development for particular typesetting and printing practices. 

The majority of exhibited material is drawn from the Non-Latin Type Collection at the University of Reading. Additional material has been generously loaned from the archives and collections of Monotype Imaging Inc, Providence Public Library, St Bride Library, and the personal collections of the curators. Most of it is being exhibited for the first time.