Bilingual Experiments in Modular Type Design

Basma Hamdy and Denielle Emans led sophomore Graphic Design students in identifying a grid structure for the base of a modular typeface. By exploring their local environment and the city of Doha, each student created a working Arabic or Latin typeface utilizing the software application Glyphs. Once complete, students produced a promotional broadsheet to publicize their unique type design by employing two categories of typography, normative and expressive. Each broadsheet conveys the excitement of contemporary type design to an audience of design professionals.

Graphic Design
Course Title: GDES 211
Faculty: Basma Hamdy / Denielle Emans

Aisha Al-abdulla / Aljowhara Al-mana / Alreem Al-Khayarin / Amna A: https / Asma Lamali / Azza Alawad / Enjood Al-Kuwari / Enxhi Avdeullaj / Fatima Fakhroo / Haya Al-hetmi / Izza Alyssa / Latifa Al-Sulaiti / Maryam Al-Mannai / Maryam Al-Muftah / Maryam Altajer / Najla K. Al-Khater / Noor Ahmed / Nurul Azlan / Roudha Al-suwaidi / Salama Al-Muhannadi / Sara Raeissi / Shaikha Al-elaiwy / Shima Aeinehdar / Zainab Al-Shibani

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Branded Tasmeem Environments 

Students were asked to utilize Tasmeem as their client, through the use of the Tasmeem brand and it's associated values. Students developed a number of event specific environments for the Tasmeem Conference itself.

After an introduction from the Tasmeem Committee, students developed four environments: a Registration Desk; a "hole-in-the-wall" type of catering spot (Baqala); exhibition opportunities for student work; and perhaps most importantly, a "Chill Spot", or meeting space that provides an opportunity for storytelling.

There was the exciting potential for the work to be built and utilized at the Tasmeem Conference at 1:1 scale, if an appropriate standard was reached and budgets permited, but the majority of work was intended to be presented as drawings, renderings, and a series of process models.


Interior Design
Course Title: IDES 301, Junior Interior Design Studio I
Faculty: Matthew Holmes-Dallimore / Liam Colquhoun

Fajr Aamir / Qumasha Abdulla / Nouf Al-Mohannadi / Dina Alkhateeb / Fatima Baker / Hagar Farag / Masa Jamili / Muhandiramlage Jeffrey / Sara Kamel / Mohamed Masoud / Ahmed Moawad / Malak Mortada / Farzana Velliyattil / Maha Al-Emadi / AlJazi Al-Khalifa / Nouf Al-Mulla / Hamdah Almal / Raneem Arafeh / Manahil Mirza / Maha Nabina / Maha Nasir / Joy Shehata


Chess Cultures 

Cultural Chess is a project that lets students learn design technology with a clear outcome in mind. That outcome being a playable chess board. The course starts by asking students to choose a theme or concept they wish to explore, this has ranged from space, sealife to crime and arabesque patterns. The course is structured where new forms of production are introduced to them each week and students are then tasked with creating outcomes with their newly acquired knowledge. Each student will have a chess board that is informed by a theme of their choosing, made with process or a variety of processes that they have not learned before.

Graphic Design
Course Title: Design Technology / GDES 202
Faculty: Mahmoud Abbas / Maryam Al Homaid

Aisha Al-Abdulla / Amna Al-Horr / Najlaa Al-Khater / Enjood Al-Kuwari / Aljowhara Al-Mana / Maryam Al-Muftah / Zainab Al-Shibani / Latifa Al-Sulaiti / Roudha Al-Suwaidi / Enxhi Avdullaj / Nurul Azlan / Sara Raeissi / Shima Aeinehdar / Noor Ahmed / Haya Al-Hetmi / Alreem Al-Khayarin / Maryam Al-Mannai / Salama Al-Muhannadi / Azza Alawad / Shaikhah Alelaiwy / Maryam Altajer / Cut Izza Alyssa / Fatima Fakhroo / Asma Lamali


Control, Shift, Exhale:
A 3-Part Tale of Cultural Heritage, Digital Craft, and Artisan Production

The VCUarts Qatar Graduate Design program travels each year to produce a tailored project, collaborating with experts in an immersive learning experience. This year’s field study re-examined the traditional Arabic lantern, or Fanoos—a symbol of festive welcome and safe haven. To make our contemporary lanterns, we traveled to The Glass Hub, in England. Prior to departure, MFA students and faculty each designed a light source: programmable, rechargeable, and controlled via smartphone app. Also prior to departure, we designed two-part, 3d-printed steel molds. Onsite in England, we blew molten glass into the hinged molds. This fusion of traditional process and modern technology leveraged our students’ creative capacity, providing control in a medium that otherwise takes years to master. The fusion of old and new reflects our affinity for Qatar’s rich cultural heritage, and demonstrates our belief in the power of design to shape the future.


MFA in Design Studies
Course Title: DESI 520/605, MFA Field Study
Faculty: Rab McClure / Marco Bruno / Diane Derr / Thomas Modeen

Reema Abu Hassan / Nada Al-Kharashi / Asma Derouiche / Johana Nasreen / Zeinah Zahir / Abir Zakzok / Rabab Abdulla / Aisha Daniels / Mohammad Jawad / Se Hee Jang / Rabeya Khatoon / Noora Melhim / Madjulin Nasrallah / Mariam Rafehi


Cultural Logic of Objects:
Geo-Positioning the Rehal

This projects explored embedded social, utilitarian, and cultural meaning of the Rehal (Quran stand) through form and function. The project intersects analogue and digital forms of making. Students produced the frame of the stand from a single pine board through a process of hand chiseling the central hinges (knuckles) and splitting the two ends in half. The physical computing components consist of a servo (actuator) and a magnetometer (sensor). In this project students considered Baudrillard’s delineation of functional/non-functional objects and value-making processes of objects. This geo-positioned Rehal, which can only be used when pointed to the Ka’ba, signifies the embedded cultural meaning of the object through its own physical function. Provoked by and in response to these defined parameters, wherein the objects physical function is dependent upon its cultural significance, students were challenged to develop meaning and reconsider function through materiality, form, surface, and space.


MFA in Design Studies
Course Title: DESI 611 Studio One
Faculty: Diane Derr

Reema Abu Hassan / Nada Al-Kharashi / Asma Derouiche / Johana Nasreen / Zeinah Zahir / Abir Zakzok


Design Across Divides

As products of a long-distance cross-cultural design collaboration, these diptych banners were created to hang on either side of a light post to raise awareness about a range of sociocultural divides that have personal meaning to the design teams. The banners were created by student teams enrolled in Basma Hamdy and Denielle Eman’s Typography course at VCUarts Qatar and Kelly Murdoch-Kitt's Typography course at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, Michigan, USA. Students collaborated virtually for three weeks via video-conferencing, messaging, and other digital communication tools to address critical challenges and opportunities facing their communities.

Graphic Design
Course Title: GDES 211

VCUarts Qatar
Aisha Al-abdulla / Aljowhara Al-mana / Alreem Al-Khayarin / Amna A: https / Asma Lamali / Azza Alawad / Enjood Al-Kuwari / Enxhi Avdeullaj / Fatima Fakhroo / Haya Al-hetmi / Izza Alyssa / Latifa Al-Sulaiti / Maryam Al-Mannai / Maryam Al-Muftah / Maryam Altajer / Najla K. Al-Khater / Noor Ahmed / Nurul Azlan / Roudha Al-suwaidi / Salama Al-Muhannadi / Sara Raeissi / Shaikha Al-elaiwy / Shima Aeinehdar / Zainab Al-Shibani

University of Michigan
Lindsay Mintz / Katie Huang / Edgar Long Kiu Chung / Melissa Newman / Michelle Zhang / Natalie Cerny / Sadhana Ramaseshadri / Ally Winn / Rebecca Gao / Mackenzie Cole / Samantha Gilberg / Samantha Greenfield / Annie Schechter / Ashley Holland / Lena Stein / Natalie Guisinger

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“Design For Life" Competition

The present Tasmeem in classroom project find impetus in a collaboration that bridges the gap between academia and industry. This partnership includes VCUarts Qatar, Le Mirage Holdings Real Estate (Project Sponsor) and Qatar Green Building Council (partner for sustainability principles and evaluation of the schematic and final phases). Similarly, this pedagogic effort is to underscore that design is not about product but processes, i.e., the essence of design hikayaat. This pedagogic engagement summarizes attributes of a holistic art/design pedagogy that paves the way for a plethora of students engagements, similar to professional career engagements. This includes but it is not limited to collaboration with industry, real life project including genuine design program and client, juried presentations, award incentives (Awardees will secure sponsored travel to Europe and two-months paid internship. This project received ample media coverage and was supported by a strong social media campaign.)


Interior Design
Course Title: IDES 323
Faculty: Cherif Amor

Group 1: Farzana Velliyattil
Group 2: Arij Mohamed & Hagar Farag
Group 3: Raneem Arfeh & Noof Al Mohannadi

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Future Realities

Decades into the Future: Will there be a significant decline in environmental resources in Qatar and across the globe? Could space exploration and human augmentation reveal new forms of discrimination? Could technological innovation cause the gap between rich and poor to widen? This project links concepts from design fiction and world-building to explore design-inspired activism. Taught by Denielle Emans and Basma Hamdy, students research contemporary case studies, science fiction, and dystopic scenarios to examine positions of power and resistance. By creating unique future scenarios in response to current socio-cultural challenges, students use design to trace a path to alternative worlds. These predictive futures aim to raise awareness, expose assumptions, provoke action, and spark debate about our collective future(s).


Graphic Design
Course Title: GDES 491
Faculty: Denielle Emans / Basma Hamdy

Samia Al Derbesti / Nadia Al-Majid / Hasa Al-Mohannadi / Amna Al-Naama / Noora Al-Saei / AlMaha Al-Sulaiti / Carlotta Bernardi / Steffi Ann Braganza / Nikko Brillantes / Yousr Elmorsy / Maryam Ibrahim / Faheem Khan / Kainat Malik / Mohamad Raeissi

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Jam Band 

Jam Band was a collaborative project between Space Research, Time Studio and sound artist, Guillaume Rouseré. Students were asked to consider the sounds and images of one location in the city. These ranged from well known landmarks, like the Corniche and Souq Waqif to everyday places, like the grocery store or a construction site. In the woodshop, they created resonant sound devices using found objects and contact microphones. Working with Guillaume, they recorded their sounds and in groups, edited them into abstract musical compositions. Finally, they created a music video for their sound piece, where they projected video shot on location into a set they designed.

Art Foundation
Course Title: Space Research and Time Studio
Teaching Assistants: Nourbanu Hijazi / Amira Natsheh 

Alhanoof Abdulla / Almaha Alkaabi / Maryam Alkhladi / Alya Alkaabi / Noof Alkhenji / Aldana Almuhannadi / Hassan Alshehhi / Osama Arabi Katbi / Reem Atout / Mariam Kraidli / Ayatalla Mohamed / Lana Mohamed / Razan Mustafa / Humyra Najdan / Hira Nisar / Noor Abdulwahab / Fajer Alabdulghani / Noof Alnaama / Nadine Alsous / Njoud Alsuwaidi / Shaikha Althani / Sara Alhelal / Hagar Allam / Naima Almajdobah / Alanoud Ashar / Zena Atalla / Reem Azab / Sherifa Eletrebi / Shainah Juras / Mohamed Nasser


Patterns of Shifting Identity 

This pattern development project introduces the idea of design that can capture the essence of cultural and historical motifs to inspire contemporary and innovative pattern development to meet the needs of young consumers, more specifically Third Culture Kids (TCKs) or Third Culture Individuals (TCIs) in the twenty first century. In this project, students researched different living environments, experiences, and design styles to formulate a suitable strategy for their design process, and to stimulate innovative thinking that incorporates traditional and contemporary ideas into their unique designs. The whole process as storytelling includes mood board development, sketches, exploration of different approaches and materials to make prototypes, all of which were partly documented with photographs. Although possible outcomes and applications for the pattern designs include scarfs, Ghutra, caps, neckties, T-shirts, coasters, trays, and bags, students presented scarfs this time.


Fashion Design
Course Title: Computers for Fashion Design
Faculty: Yang Soon Ju

Najla Al-eida / Safa Al-Hadithi / Mohammed Al-Khuzaei / Dana Baqla / Ryan Edgar Basilio / Abdulla Darwish Fakhroo / Sidra Khawaja / Noofa Latheef / Hassan Marafih / Aysha Mohamed / Earl John Pagdanganan


Professional Narratives

Students in ENGL 388 Writing in the Workplace composed written narratives relaying how they came to be who they are as designers or art historians. After engaging in technical and pedagogical workshops about producing videos, they created their own short videos, incorporating parts of their narratives and samples of their work. These video products will be employed by the university’s admissions counselors when promoting the school to students in secondary schools. The advantage for our students is they now possess a visually informative and stimulating autobiography of themselves as professionals and their work, which they may use in promotions, interviews, and exhibits, as well as a personal reminder of how and who they came to be.


Liberal Arts & Sciences
Course Title: ENGL 388 Writing in the Workplace
Faculty: Robin Fetherston

Aaqifa Altaf, Honors Program, GDES / Ahmed Moawad, IDES / Carlotta Bernardi, GDES / Emily Mustian, FASH / Faheem Khan, GDES / Gajin Chung, GDES / Hala Alassi, IDES / Joy Shehata, IDES / Khloud Almansour, IDES / Maryam Al-Darwish, ARTH / Reham Ahmed, GDES / Sarah Al-Afifi, GDES / Teslim Sanni, ARTH / Yasamin Shaikhi, IDES / Yeon Geong Hwang, GDES


Tales Closer to Home / حكايات قرب القلب

There is a richness to the variety of human experiences. In the sharing of our stories, we can exceed the limitations of our singular perspective and find community in the stories of others. Throughout the course of the workshop, students explored their own personal narratives and worked to present them in visual narrative forms for dissemination into a wider community. Each student worked on one eight page comic, writing, editing, and drawing it into a form that enables a wide audience to access that experience. Students reflected on their experiences as young creative members of a large and diverse community present within Qatar today.


Painting and Printmaking
Course Title: Tools and Techniques: The Graphic Memoir and the Middle East
Faculty: Abdul Azim Al Ghussein

Amna Al Muftah/ Noor Al Sheibani / Salma Awad / Yara Elfouly / Sara Jayyousi / Peppy Prathyusha / Amira Radhi / Maryam Al-Thani / Tiflah Al-Naimi / Aisha Al-Abdulla / Amena AlMulla / Amna Al-Thani / Muneera Al-Thani

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The students enrolled in Surface Research during the Fall 2018 semester worked resurfacing wooden tables for the Torba farmers market through a project that focuses on grid systems, and systematic drawing. The project was designed to introduce limited tools and processes, that provide unlimited creative solutions. Divergent thinking and collaboration are emphasized, along with problem solving, craft and visual systems. The project begun with extensive research in both digital and hand made illustrations based on a grid pattern. As the work evolved student moved to working with the grid and drawing tools directly on outdoor picnic tables provided by QF. The table tops were completely hand decorated based on a shared visual system to have a cohesive and diverse visual language. The tables for the project, were commissioned by Qatar Foundation and Tasmeem Doha, and will be used at the Torba Farmers market, during tasmeem and at other events around Education City.


Art Foundation
Course Title: Surface Research Studio
Teaching Assistants: Gihad Ataalla and Sarah Elawad

Albaker Mashael / Fatima Aldosari / Aisha Alhardan / Noora Alkubaisi / Alreem Alsulaiti / Maryam Althani / Alanoud Althani / Asmaa Alban / Ayman Alkhatib Alhosani / Abdul Rahman Aslem / Alice Hamada / Farrah Masri / Maha Mohamed / Amira Sheikh / Yousef Alfuhaid / Latifa Almal / Sharifa Almarrikhi / Deema Alqashouti / Ghada Alsheeb / Roudah Alghanim / Hala Ali / Ghada Alsayed / Maryam Fakhri / Hannah Fathala / Farida Maelathil / Gayatri Masad / Danna Ramzan / Fatima Yigit / Ege O.