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Printing Museum hosts block party inaugurating Arabic-English mural

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hundreds of friends and neghbors stopping byblock party to inaugurate new mural at Printing Museum for family-friendly entertainment and photo op July 25 2014
hundreds of friends and neghbors stopping byblock party to inaugurate new mural at Printing Museum for family-friendly entertainment and photo op July 25 2014
Marc Pembroke
Mural "Changing Language Changing Worlds" unveiled July 25 2014
Mural "Changing Language Changing Worlds" unveiled July 25 2014
photo by Marc Pembroke

On Friday, July 25, The Printing Museum hosted a block party inaugurating its new bilingual (English-Arabic) mural entitled “Changing Language, Changing Worlds” executed earlier this week on the west wall of the museum along Peveto Street through the collaborative efforts of Lebanese artist Pascal Zoghbi and a Houston-based street painter known as “DUAL.Several hundred art enthusiasts, neighbors, and stake holders gathered to photograph the mural, chat, and enjoy free beer from Saint Arnold Brewery and a variety of menus from food trucks in the Museum parking lot on West Gray. The project was conceived by Keelin Burrows, curator of The Printing Museum, "to engage and build communities within the neighborhood, within Houston, and within different artistic and ethnic communities interested in printing and graphics," said Ms. Burrows. The mural also coincides with and relates to its current exhibit, “Contemporary Arabic Graffiti and Lettering: Photographs of a Visual Revolution” which, in turn, was inspired in part the book,Arabic Graffiti," (2011) . The Printing Museum website explains, “Pascal Zoghbi is a leading graphic designer and typographer in Beirut, Lebanon. He is the founder of 29LT and co-creator of the "Changing Languages, Changing Worlds" mural.

According to Ms. Burrows, Zoghbi and Dual worked together on-line to develop the mural. The English message, in multicolored letters, is the same as the Arabic message, read from right to left, symbolizing the interaction and collaboration cultures and traditions. Mr. Zoghbi was also scheduled to present a lecture on the topic of the exhibit on Saturday July 26. Unfortunately, he suffered a broken ankle, and was not able to attend, so the lecture was rescheduled until late August, (date and time to be announced). Mr. Dual, on the other hand was present at block party according to an anonymous source, but, like most graffiti artists, he prefers to keep a low profile. Those interested in more information may contact Shelby Jarvis, the manager of Dual Streets at info@dualstreets.com

The exhibit runs through September 13, 2014. The works include three themes further elaborated on The Printing Museum website : “The first theme "Arabic Script and Calligraphy: A Historical Perspective and Beyond" presents the development of the Arabic alphabet.

The second theme "The Contemporary Presence of Calligraphy in the Public Sphere" uses documentary photography to demonstrate how calligraphy, often by unknown artists, marks secular spaces, and beliefs.The third theme "The Rise of International Arabic Graffiti Art" demonstrates how contemporary graffiti artists of Middle Eastern descent are incorporating Arabic calligraphy into large street murals, public light installations and performances.”