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“Illuminated Letters” Calligraphy Performance Event

Illuminated letters exhibit, Photo by Victoria Lansford
By Victoria Lansford

The Atlanta Calligraphy Guild, Friends of the Alphabet, will be staging a calligraphic performance on Wednesday, March 6 from 3:30 to 7:30pm, downtown at Trinity United Methodist Church, 265 Washington Street SW, Atlanta, GA 30303.

The event, called “Illuminated Letters,” will feature 20 calligraphers demonstrating 20 different calligraphic styles, or “hands,” as visitors are able to walk through and view the artists in action. Presented in a spot-lit and silent setting, the performance focuses on the act of writing itself, drawing attention to the power, vitality, and variety of letterforms throughout history and around the world.

The featured calligraphers will demonstrate many styles including Italic, ornate Copperplate and Spencerian scripts, Celtic “Uncial,” and Gothic hands. Non-Western alphabets will also be highlighted, with artists representing Asian, Middle-Eastern, Indian, Mediterranean, and other European alphabets. They will also employ various media used in modern and traditional manuscripts such as animal vellum, quill pens, illumination, and gilding.

With the onset of the digital age, handwriting is now more art form than everyday activity. Highly stylized handwriting, known as calligraphy, is found in places as diverse as wedding invitations, typographic design, consumer product labeling, and tattoo artistry.

Based on original performances in Belgium and Germany devised by renowned calligrapher Brody Neuenschwander, this event is organized purely to draw attention to the aesthetic and athletic beauties of artistic lettering. Information will be available on all demonstrated styles, as well as guides to area calligraphers and calligraphy instruction.

The event is secular and free to the public. Friends of the Alphabet encourages anyone interested in the beauty of handwritten letterforms to come and enjoy this unusual experience.

The Atlanta Calligraphy Guild, Friends of the Alphabet, is a group of people who share an interest in the history and techniques of the written letter. The group meets on the second Monday of each month at Trinity United Methodist Church from 7:00 to 9:00pm, with a program presented at each meeting. The guild also hosts workshops taught by national and internationally renowned instructors.

For more information on this event and the guild in general, see their website, www.friendsofthealphabet.org, or call 678-463-7500.

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