Linotype type designer Nadine Chahine has created the Gebran2005 typeface for An-Nahar, Lebanon’s leading Arabic-language daily newspaper, as part of a major redesign of the publication.
The font is named after Gebran Tueni, An-Nahar’s former editor and publisher, how became an MP in Beruit and was assassinated in a car-bomb explosion in December 2005.
“Like Gebran himself, the typeface has a distinctive, self-assured presence,” says Chahine, who’s from Lebanon and grew up reading An-Nahar. "The tone of the typeface evokes authority, yet it maintains an elegant and contemporary look. It’s a bold design for bold times."
The redesign of An-Nahar is not only intended to pay tribute to Tueni but also to celebrate the newspaper’s commitment to free speech, apparent throughout An-Nahar’s history. First published in 1933 by Tueni’s grandfather, also named Gebran Tueni, the newspaper provided a platform for expressing various opinions. After his death, editing and publishing responsibilities remained in the family, first with son Ghassen Tueni, followed by Gebran Tueni’s namesake grandson.
After his assassination at the age of 48, his daughter, Nayla Tueni, won her father’s seat in Lebanon’s parliament and is now its youngest member at 28 years old. She is dedicated to continuing her father’s work and bringing new energy to An-Nahar, which means “the day” in Arabic.
“We will continue to shine a bright light on the importance of free speech in the Middle East that will not be dimmed,” said Nayla Tueni. “The redesign of An-Nahar reflects this determination, which we’re confident will help us to better connect with both young and mature readers. Nadine has captured the essence of this spirit through her sculptural design approach, which appears to have made every character in her typeface count and be noticed. Each seems to say, ‘I am here, and I am here to stay,’ just like the Lebanese people.”
The Gebran2005 typeface includes two weights, bold and heavy. Both are designed with tight proportions in order to preserve space in An-Nahar headlines.