Hello, my name is Noa Yaari, I have a PhD in History, and I’m an artist, curator and the developer of “Multiform Grammar.”

Multiform grammar is a grammatical system for the combination of words and images. It illuminates and conceptualizes the ways in which users of both words and images integrate them into cohesive and coherent verbal-visual representations. This grammatical system is timely as it enables us to better understand a mode of communication typical to the digital era and to use it effectively and creatively.

My blog The Multiform Grammar Lab (previously titled Visual Literacy in History) explores intersections of words and images in the creation and communication of knowledge. It is based on both my doctoral thesis and my recent research. My scholarship provides new terminology to describe arguments that are composed of words and images, which I termed “multiform arguments.” It also offers new analytical methods to examine the varied structures and functions of multiform arguments, and it raises our awareness of their effectiveness.

The multiform Grammar Lab is currently a virtual lab, but its establishment as a physical lab is in progress. The objectives of the project are to:

  • Deepen our understanding of intersections of words and images in the creation and communication of knowledge by applying state-of-the-art research that combines methods from the Humanities (text analysis and argumentation), the Neurocognitive Sciences (especially tracking readers’ eye movements), and Computer Science (computation of semantic relations and image annotation). A team of experts in those fields will conduct the research and publish its findings.
  • Deliver workshops to students and faculty that foster creative and effective juxtaposition of words and images in teaching and learning contexts. These workshops combine hands-on experience and acquisition of relevant concepts, based on the new conceptual framework that I developed in my doctoral project and principles from Universal Design for Learning (UDL).
  • Collaborate with Teaching and Learning Centres, and Writing Centers to advance the use of verbal-visual thought and expression through varied technologies.
  • Initiate and organize symposia, exhibitions, and other activities for the academic community and the general public about the combination of words and images, its application throughout history, and its current use in various fields.

If you are interested in collaboration, please feel free to contact me at noayaari@yorku.ca, or through the contact page.

Noa Yaari - World Map

Noa Yaari, World Map, 2007. Ink and oil on paper, 80×120 cm