LANGUAGES MATTER! A UNESCO poster competition

Competition Details

Language & Familiarity - The Visual Connect

by priya narayanan

Language, a dynamic set of visual, auditory, or tactile symbols, is a crucial aspect of communication for mankind, offering great opportunities for man to express himself, make him be understood.

Language as an Auditory symbol - Spoken language has been the most basic communication tool for man, allowing him to express almost every feeling effectively. The sound ‘a’ (and its variations) forms the basic sound in any spoken language, and constitutes the first sound uttered by a new born.

Language as a Visual symbol - Though the written language has constraints, offering lesser opportunities for complete expression, it offers man the ability to display his aesthetic prowess, which isn’t possible through spoken language, satisfying his creative senses. While there are more than 9 hundred spoken languages across the world, their corresponding written languages are derived from far lesser writing systems, with only thirteen systems being used to write most of the languages.

Language as a Tactile symbol -Tactile symbols have been developed mainly to serve as communication tools for either the visually impaired or the deaf and mute and involve a number of ‘touch and feel’ tools for expressing ideas. For a person who is blind/deaf/mute, these symbolically form his ‘mother’ language.

Language is for all, language is everyone’s…..The idea of Mother Language instills an emotional connect and pride in each person. My concept for the poster is to effectively integrate the auditory, visual & tactile aspect of language - to depict the basic sound of spoken language ‘a’ through the 13 basic writing systems and the basic tactile symbols (Braille & Hand signs), in a graphical, visually attractive manner, allowing all people to connect to the theme through visual/tactile familiarity.

*To complete the design, the 'a' written in Braille would be punched.