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dying arts? NAH!

Just another voice to chime in with Beth Lee. I think, from personal
observation (which I will admit is incomplete and certainly biased) that
calligraphy is alive and very well indeed--and not, as Peter suggested,
just at the upper levels.

The Cyberscribes listserve is at least as active as this one, with some
600 subscribers, many of whom are apparently relative newcomers to the
field. Our guild has "newbies"  as well as oldtimers, and newbies keep
coming to the adult ed classes that many of us teach. For the past
what--15 years?--there has been an annual week-long lettering arts
conference. They've been growing in popularity as word spreads; this
year there were not one but TWO conferences! In addition, there are many
opportunities for extended study--Camp Cheerio, Lake Louise Letters,
Ghost Ranch, Reggie Ezell's year-long course, John Stevens' six-month
course, correspondence courses by Ingmire and others; tours/study groups
led by Paul Shaw, Mark Van Stone and others.

One of the nice synergies that seems to be occurring is that the equally
lively fields of book arts, crafts, papermaking and other related areas
are helping to feed interest in calligraphy, and vice versa. A lot of
people are finding pleasure and fulfillment in doing "hand work"--and
are finding support and information to expand their horizons about what
that might mean.

And what a great thing that is for all of us!

Betty Steckman

            BOOK_ARTS-L: The listserv for all the book arts.
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