Areas of Expertise: Graphic design and typography
Courses taught: Graphic Design and Typography
Rezan is a Doctoral Researcher in graphic design with particular focus on cross-cultural branding.
Rezan Gassas is currently pursuing her PhD in the area of cross-cultural branding at Cambridge School of Art at Anglia Ruskin University. She holds undergraduate and postgraduate qualifications in graphic design. She is also a design educator, currently on a scholarship leave, from the College of Design at the University of Dammam in Saudi Arabia. Prior to her academic career, Rezan worked in several advertising agencies in her home country as a graphic designer, during which time she noted the growing problem of Arabic logo mark adaptations, this eventually became the focus of her current doctoral research.
Throughout the past few decades, global brands with strong visual identities have been entering the Arabic market. Today, some regulations require the translation of brand names and adaptation of the Latin logo marks and the rest of the visual identities to the Arabic market. However, logo marks are still not always adequately designed and managed when adapted to different markets with a new language, script, and culture. A ‘third culture’ concept is adopted as a conceptual framework to identify the three cultures that global corporations have across different markets around the world.
This study uses a qualitative multi-stage case study approach to investigate the subject visually, linguistically, and culturally. The study seeks to explore the phenomenon of logo mark adaptations in the Arab region from Latin to Arabic scripts, to provide designers and the process of brand management with a toolkit to maintain the visual identities. The study concludes with a recommendation for a guidebook of global brands adapting their logo marks to regions with non-Latin scripts. The guide advises both the brand managers and the designers to work side by side from the beginning of all the major decision-making steps to the implementation of the adaptations.
Gassas, R. (2014) Global Branding and Arabic. Presentation at Association Typographique Internationale (ATypI) Conference, 17-21 September 2014, Barcelona, Spain.
Gassas, R. (2015) Brands Traveling to Arabia: Integrating Arabic Language and Culture in Visual Brand Identities. Conference paper at: Brand2Global Conference, 30 September-1 October 2015, London, United Kingdom.