Calligraphy will become a part of a nation
The official opening of the first Russian Contemporary Museum of Calligraphy in Sokolniki did not go as happy and bright as it was originally planned. There is no one to blame for this. The fact that the museum of calligraphy was launched on the day when Alexey II, Patriarch of Moscow and all Russia was interred is just a bad coincidence of circumstances. It was simply impossible to cancel or postpone the international event, which has been in preparation for months. But it does not mean that the members of the Russian Union of Calligraphers did not share the grief of the nation.
“Today Russia is bidding farewell to Alexey II, Patriarch of Moscow and all Russia. He was a wonderful man, he did many things for the country’s prosperity,” Alexey Shaburov, the museum project’s author greeted the audience. “Due to the sorrowful occasion we had to reduce our programme and cancel the concert. But we are sure that the Patriarch would certainly have approved our undertaking. After all, the purpose of the Russian Union of Calligraphers is not the commercial side of it or a simple demonstration of art, but the formation of a beautiful and healthy society.”
Harmony, indeed, is the most appropriate epithet to describe the atmosphere in the new museum. The black and white interior, exquisite works of famous calligraphers from around the world, a delicate scent of floral perfume, roses and muted piano music helped to transfer connoisseurs of calligraphy into some kind of perfect world, away from Moscow and its anomalously warm wet December weather. As soon as Andrey Busygin, Deputy Minister of culture of the Russian Federation gave a speech, the last “bond” with the business and official reality of the capital was torn. The illusion became complete and peace reigned.
A video with the participation of school children from St. Petersburg was shown on the big screen, a calligrapher from India made a declaration of love for Russia, and a cellist Denis Shapovalov performed his favorite musical compositions by Johann Sebastian Bach. A reporter of the strana.ru online portal took the opportunity and asked Pyotr Chobitko, President of the National Union of Calligraphers whether the art of calligraphy can bring divine harmony in a person’s soul who is engaged in this art: “Calligraphy is truly a unique art. Everyone who gets a touch of it begins to discover and develop his personal edge, given by nature. Every side without exception. I actually tend to think that calligraphy is the foundation, suitable for further construction of any “building”: in science, arts and crafts. This art has a lot to offer even for contemporary computer technologies and its future development!”
The language’s appearance and characters in its component have a direct impact on the national consciousness, the renowned calligrapher explained. This dependency is direct and simple: if our language is beautiful, rich and alluring, hence, so is the nation, expressing thoughts in such a lovely dialect. “Many people believe the Latin alphabet font system is more beautiful than the Cyrillic one,” Pyotr Chobitko complains. “All my life I am trying to prove the opposite. You know that the Latin font has been carried out over the centuries, and it was an uninterrupted process. While in the last century, for example, Russian calligraphers have not been working on fonts for seventy years. But we have the bigger number of letters, so the language is richer; the freedom in creativity is wider!
It is extremely significant to start working on the Cyrillic font system, to reveal its beauty in full. I think that the movement of calligraphers and this exhibition are the first steps towards the goal. I also believe that calligraphy is to face a rapid development, since original and beautiful fonts are now in a great demand, and the necessity to modernize the Cyrillic type form is evident. Here contemporary computer technologies can become one of its powerful allies: it is now possible to save all that has been written by hand in digital form without any changes. In particular, a small edition of the Constitution of the Russian Federation, a handwritten copy executed by myself and my colleague will soon be published. Our works are saved on the computer in their unaltered form.
The Mystery of the World’s Calligraphy exhibition lasts from December 10th – 14th in the Exhibit Hall 7 of Sokolniki Exhibition and Convention Centre. Entrance is free of charge.
Source: Strana.Ru online portal