Harir, a modern Arabic typeface in three optical sizes

New fonts
harir blog head

Animation: Bahman Eslami, Screenplay: Peter Bilak, Voiceover: Dinah Lammiman, Music: Ali Rezaei.

Harir is a modern Arabic text typeface featuring three optical sizes, the first typeface of its kind.

Harir is based on the Naskh calligraphy style, but is designed to work well with or without diacritics. Its letter proportions and stroke contrasts have been adjusted to create consistent word shapes, and dots have been carefully positioned to help balance the negative space between the letters.

Harir sketch

Early sketch of Harir by Bahman Eslami, 2010

Harir’s counter spaces are larger than those of most Arabic typefaces, improving legibility and virtually eliminating noise around word shapes. Its letter combinations are more consistent, and the essential structure of the conventional letterforms is preserved.

Harir is intended for both headline and body text, and its Caption font has reduced stroke contrast, raised teeth and increased dot and diacritic spacing for maximum legibility.

A world of global communications demands fonts that support multiple languages and scripts. After Bahman Eslami completed Harir, Peter Biľak developed a special version of Lava to serve as Harir’s Latin character set, perfectly matching its weight, rhythm and contrast. Designers of non-Latin typefaces are often forced to adapt Latin design principles when they want their fonts to work well in multilingual settings. This can result in distorted lettershapes that deviate from the script’s tradition and heritage, impairing readability. Harir and Lava provide a unique combination that enables professional-quality multilingual (Arabic, Latin, Greek and Cyrillic) typesetting with no compromises.

Harir was named one of the best typefaces of the decades by Letter.2.

Read more about development of Harir in this article.

Harir specimen Harir bilingual setting

A special version of Lava has been made to match all three optical sizes of Harir.

Harir bilingual setting

Harir as both the headline and display typeface in a proposal for an Arabic newspaper. Design by Audacity Partners.

Harir specimen