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One Designer’s Vision for a More Inclusive Future

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Alvin Ashiatey is a forward-thinking designer and educator who is pushing the boundaries of design with his unique perspective. With a Fine Arts degree from Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology and an MFA in Graphic Design from Yale School of Art, Ashiatey’s distinctive background has infused his design practice with a profound appreciation for language, technology, and culture. His current project, “Re-spelling,” reflects his boundless creativity and unwavering commitment to collecting Ghanaian Pidgin English as it is expressed online.

Using a web scraper, Ashiatey combs through misspellings and unique language structures that might be unfamiliar to an English dictionary. This project is an exquisite showcase of the ingenious use of non-standard characters, such as the number “3” or the closing parenthesis “)”, outside the usual English alphabet. Ashiatey has gone beyond “Re-spelling” to design a typeface and keyboard that enables writing in various local African languages. This underscores the need for technology and design to embrace cultural diversity and be more inclusive.

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As he continues to broaden his horizons at Yale University’s Center for Collaborative Arts and Media Studies, Ashiatey explores the endless possibilities of virtual realities and motion capture. He is also busy curating a zine fair and developing an African Typeface for a museum in New York, striving to leave his indelible mark on the art world while inspiring others to question conventional design practices.

Ashiatey is a true innovator who is using design to make a positive impact on the world. He is an inspiration to designers everywhere, and I am excited to see what he does next.

Alvin Ashiatey: Gold Coast Railway. Keyboard and Typeface Design. (Copyright © Alvin Ashiatey, 2021).

Alvin Ashiatey: Gold Coast Railway. Keyboard and Typeface Design. (Copyright © Alvin Ashiatey, 2021).

Alvin Ashiatey: Re-spelling: An Ongoing Collection of Pidgin Words Online. (Copyright © Alvin Ashiatey, 2021).

Alvin Ashiatey: Re-spelling: An Ongoing Collection of Pidgin Words Online. (Copyright © Alvin Ashiatey, 2021).

 

Alvin Ashiatey: AAA54. A typeface designed to ultimately handle a number of local languages in Ghana. (Copyright © Alvin Ashiatey, 2021).

Alvin Ashiatey: AAA54. A typeface designed to ultimately handle a number of local languages in Ghana. (Copyright © Alvin Ashiatey, 2021).

Alvin Ashiatey: AAA54. A typeface designed to ultimately handle a number of local languages in Ghana. (Copyright © Alvin Ashiatey, 2021).

Alvin Ashiatey: AAA54. A typeface designed to ultimately handle a number of local languages in Ghana. (Copyright © Alvin Ashiatey, 2021).



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