Jana Traboulsi

Jana Traboulsi is a graphic designer from Lebanon. She is on the shortlist for the Jameel Art Price. Her Kitab al-Hawamish (Book of Margins), 2017, is an artist’s book that investigates margins and marginalia in Arabic manuscript production. Stemming from research into Middle Eastern traditions of book-making, Traboulsi explores aspects of manuscript practices that are often considered secondary to the central text, including diacritics, Sura markers, the index, and catchwords. A ‘scar’ she found on an ancient piece of parchment – where the animal skin had been stitched closed and written around – inspired an emphasis on the materiality of the book as form. Traboulsi’s focus on the marginal extends to recitation: how language is formed and experienced in the body, from the brain to the diaphragm, larynx and mouth. Kitab al-Hawamish is a palimpsestic object whose annotated illustrations recall the scientific treatise. For the Jameel Prize exhibition, extracts of the book will be reproduced in the form of supergraphics, alongside copies of the original.


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