Ayasha Khan’s clean design investigates the evolution of information, from medieval script to emojis

Recently finishing her degree at École de Recherche Graphique, the French designer is using her pared back designs to create work that toys with established modes of typographic expression.

When attempting to summarise her practice, Ayasha Khan tells us that “most of my research focuses on the frustration that typography can bring”. She often muses on questions surrounding the changing ways in which humanity visually translates information, like “How can plain text translate any emotion?” and “How can we recognise ourselves in small rounded yellow faces?”.

To visualise such investigations, Ayasha can be found collecting images of medieval art, script and initials, with which she then creates an “ornamental glitch” by passing them through digital software – often scanning and adding filters – and altering their characteristics. “I like the accidents those techniques offer,” Ayasha identifies. Ayasha's approach is inspired by figures that are challenging and playing with established modes of typographic expression, like Jean Alessandrini and his 1980 typographic codex classification and Robert Massin, a pioneer of typographic hijinks. Currently, Ayasha is exploring ways in which her unique vision can be expressed in editorial mediums.


Ayasha Khan: Poster Émomania (Copyright © Ayasha Khan & Éditions Biceps, 2022)


Ayasha Khan: Écris-moi un visage, Biceps Édition (Copyright © Ayasha Khan 2022)


Ayasha Khan: Type experimentation (Copyright © Ayasha Khan 2022)


Ayasha Khan: Émomania glyph set (Copyright © Ayasha Khan 2022)


Ayasha Khan: Poster Play (Copyright © Ayasha Khan 2022)


Ayasha Khan: Booklet Blind Spots event (Copyright © Ayasha Khan 2022)


Ayasha Khan: mix of works (Copyright © Ayasha Khann, 2022)


Ayasha Khan: Idéonoma book (Copyright © Ayasha Khan 2022)


Ayasha Khan: Émomania composition (Copyright © Ayasha Khan 2022)

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Ayasha Khan: Lettrines anthropomorphiques (Copyright © Ayasha Khan 2022)

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About the Author

Olivia Hingley

Olivia (she/her) joined the It’s Nice That team as an editorial assistant in November 2021 and soon became staff writer. A graduate of the University of Edinburgh with a degree in English literature and history, she’s particularly interested in photography, publications and type design.

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