I’m mainly interested now in American calligraphy, the topic for my future book The ABCs of the USA. Most of the established calligraphers that I talk to say there isn’t any such thing, that "real calligraphy" can only come from the Roman, Medieval, and Renaissance styles of Europe. So I think I may be on to something; when people can’t see an idea that is clear to me, it’s time to write a book.
Every other American field has had to establish its independence from the Old World--philosophy, architecture, music, dance, fashion, and even spelling. It's time calligraphy got recognized too.
I’ll be posting examples of the letters that I see around me, here in Boston and from my travels in the USA. What could be more American than those?
What makes it American? What makes it calligraphy? Your comments are always welcome.
Here’s a detail from a unique American gem. The Corn Palace in Mitchell, South Dakota, is covered annually with elaborate, eye-catching mosaic pictures and letters. They are made out of—what else?!—corn cobs of yellow, red, purple, and black. Americans have a long history of improvising letters out of individual dots, including such techniques as beading by Indians, lightbulbs displays on the Goodyear Blimp, and football fans in the card section. All this creativity led to the first pixellated letters, and dominance in the field of digital typographic design.