I want to extend my deepest appreciation to Flavia for writing this passionate review and to Linda for her wonderful pictures and review of Myrna’s workshop. They help make my job easier and add a richness to our guild. Thank you girls!
One of the privileges of being a member of the Pittsburgh Calligraphy Guild is meeting extraordinary practitioners of a time honored art form. A recent workshop brought such a practitioner, Mike Gold from the American Greeting Card Company, to Pittsburgh for a two day tour de force.
As in any art form there is the formal aspect, the crafting of the letters. The calligrapher commonly works in alliance with the creator of statements by rendering the words with skill and grace to lend visual beauty to beautiful and meaningful words.
There is another aspect to the craft that elevates it to the level of Fine Art. Humans are beings with profound appetites, we crave satisfaction of all our five senses but most of all we need the expression and definition of emotions. Beauty satisfies the senses and the expression of feeling satisfies our inner being, our soul if you will, that we seek to define and by defining possibly refine to reach a deeper state of being. We usually think of music, images and sculptures as a vehicle through which we liberate and define our feelings and believes. We now must add calligraphy to the traditionally excepted forms of expression due to the redefinition of the nature of calligraphy by 20th century calligraphers.
Expression demands profound insight and the ability to allow what emerges from that inner depth to guide the hand and mind to make visual decisions. In any form of art that is the most difficult aspect in creating a tangible expression of an experience. Those who succeed we revere as masters of their respective form of expression. It is a daunting task to guide those willing to follow to experience the liberating of sincere expressions, one such brave man, Mike Gold, came to Pittsburgh and guided those who participated in his workshop with patience, kindness and generosity that is only possible from those who have in thought and deed reached deeply within and touched the sublime aspect of the self. Frustration and exhilaration helped those he guided to hone understanding of the potential of infusing calligraphy with a power that transcends mere skill.