Calligraphy: Facing the Modern World

Calligraphy: Facing the Modern World

Workshop with Thomas Ingmire

March 28th - 30th, 2014

How can calligraphy, steeped in rules necessary for the development of elegant lettering, move with meaning into a modern world? Expressive calligraphy has been one experimental path; one that seldom transcends its play with lively marks into real meaning. My sense is that we start at the wrong place, with letterforms. There is an old design theorem, generally associated with architecture: "form follows function." A calligraphic interpretation would be something like "form follows meaning." Calligraphic teaching at best reverses the order and in general is merely obsessed with just the first one, "form." We learn Italic, Italic variations, book hand, roman caps, uncial, expressive lettering, etc.

In this workshop we will experiment with some alternative ways of thinking about lettering. The first assumption will be that the role of the calligrapher is that of expressing meaning through the creation of new letterforms, not the perfection of the old. We will address how meaning can lead us to form. We will look at the ideas presented to us by Hans Burgert, who presented, with his theories and practice a path for exploring contemporary forms. The words of poetry, their sense and sound, will be another starting point. And finally music with its foundation of rhythm will be used as a link between poetry/ and its potential visual expressions with lettering.

Registration information to follow soon!