On World Calligraphy Day, Indian artists create magic with strokes – The New Indian Express

Express press service

Shivangi Pandey has tried his hand at calligraphy, a visual art form of writing stylized letters with a pen or brush amid the pandemic. It was simply a matter of luck that the 23-year-old picked up a brush and started exploring new techniques for depicting strokes and scripts, eventually sparking a keen interest in the practice.

“I started with brush pen calligraphy; now i tried other scripts. So far, I’ve learned through online workshops and videos,” Pandey said. Love for the art form brought this Jharkhand resident to New Delhi for the Akshar Mahotsav (Festival of Letters), an event to commemorate the occasion of World Calligraphy Day celebrated annually on the second Wednesday of August.

The one-day event was organized by the Calligraphy Foundation (TCF), a Pitampura-based organization that works to promote and spread calligraphy, in collaboration with the Design Department of the University of Technology of Delhi (DTU), Rohini, and saw the participation of around 200 calligraphers.

Experts and amateurs from various parts of the country were present on the scene, eager to meet others interested in the discipline in order to learn from them a technique or two. “I was very excited to meet everyone because until now I was living in a bubble. But now I met other people in the field. It was a great experience for us [people who love this art form]added Pandey, who spent the day attending various practice sessions led by experienced calligraphers.

Master the blows

While calligraphy has long been hailed as a practice for those with beautiful handwriting, it has yet to find its footing as an art form. “In India, there are several great calligraphers but little importance is given to the art form,” commented professional calligrapher and TCF member, Tanvi Saraiya (45) when asked about the importance of such a event.

Abhishek Vardhan Singh, the co-founder of TCF, added, “There is no community for calligraphers and there is little awareness of the art. We focus on awareness as well as education. Through this event, we also aim to promote regional writings. The Akshar Mahotsav was a neat attempt to draw attention to the art of calligraphy and the application of form – such as on murals, paintings, engravings, tattoo designs, etc. The event was nothing less than a celebration of calligraphy through an array of group activities.

The tools used – wide-edged pens, brush pen or pointed pen – for different styles of calligraphy are distinct. In fact, each medium has a certain set of principles. Saraiya led a session on broad calligraphy and touched on Fraktur – an artistic and calligraphic hand of the Latin alphabet. Similarly, Gandhinagar-based calligrapher Ekta Chahar’s session was on copperplate writing – a style of calligraphy done with a pointed tip. “Our attempt is only to raise awareness and inform participants about the different calligraphy techniques.

It should be like a starting point for them to take the art form seriously based on what they resonate with,” Chahar said. There were also some demonstrations by Jaipur’s physician and calligrapher, Dr. Yogendra Velichharla, and the city’s renowned artist, Lalit Maurya, among others. Other than that, one could peruse the stalls set up at the event where attendees could purchase the necessary tools to start their calligraphy journey.

Shivangi Pandey has tried his hand at calligraphy, a visual art form of writing stylized letters with a pen or brush amid the pandemic. It was simply a matter of luck that the 23-year-old picked up a brush and started exploring new techniques for depicting strokes and scripts, eventually sparking a keen interest in the practice. “I started with brush pen calligraphy; now i tried other scripts. So far, I’ve learned through online workshops and videos,” Pandey said. Love for the art form brought this Jharkhand resident to New Delhi for the Akshar Mahotsav (Festival of Letters), an event to commemorate the occasion of World Calligraphy Day celebrated annually on the second Wednesday of August. The one-day event was organized by the Calligraphy Foundation (TCF), a Pitampura-based organization that works to promote and spread calligraphy, in collaboration with the Design Department of the University of Technology of Delhi (DTU), Rohini, and saw the participation of around 200 calligraphers. Experts and amateurs from various parts of the country were present on the scene, eager to meet others interested in the discipline in order to learn from them a technique or two. “I was very excited to meet everyone because until now I was living in a bubble. But now I met other people in the field. It was a great experience for us [people who love this art form]added Pandey, who spent the day attending various practice sessions led by experienced calligraphers. Mastering the strokes While calligraphy has long been hailed as a practice for those with beautiful handwriting, it has yet to find its footing as an art form. “In India, there are several great calligraphers but little importance is given to the art form,” commented professional calligrapher and TCF member, Tanvi Saraiya (45) when asked about the importance of such a event. Abhishek Vardhan Singh, the co-founder of TCF, added, “There is no community for calligraphers and there is little awareness of the art. We focus on awareness as well as education. Through this event, we also aim to promote regional writings. The Akshar Mahotsav was a neat attempt to draw attention to the art of calligraphy and the application of form – such as on murals, paintings, engravings, tattoo designs, etc. The event was nothing less than a celebration of calligraphy through an array of group activities. The tools used – wide-edged pens, brush pen or pointed pen – for different styles of calligraphy are distinct. In fact, each medium has a certain set of principles. Saraiya led a session on broad calligraphy and touched on Fraktur – an artistic and calligraphic hand of the Latin alphabet. Similarly, Gandhinagar-based calligrapher Ekta Chahar’s session was on copperplate writing – a style of calligraphy done with a pointed tip. “Our attempt is only to raise awareness and inform participants about the different calligraphy techniques. It should be like a starting point for them to take the art form seriously based on what they resonate with,” Chahar said. There were also some demonstrations by Jaipur’s physician and calligrapher, Dr. Yogendra Velichharla, and the city’s renowned artist, Lalit Maurya, among others. Other than that, one could peruse the stalls set up at the event where attendees could purchase the necessary tools to start their calligraphy journey.

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