[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index][Thread Index]
Re: [BKARTS] Telling of the Book Arts World
Nice dodge there, but I am not talking about copying the original Bible I am
talking about when a scribe takes the scripture and while they are inspired
by the scripture, comes up with a work of Art in the drawings and the
calligraphy. So Sally if someone took a Midsummer Nights Dream and used
calligraphy and illustrated it, that would not be art, because Shakespeare already
printed it? How many book arts discussions here are of people illustrating or
being inspired by previous work? And what about oriental calligraphy and Art,
they are not art because they are copying previous works, quotes of Confucius,
or the Buddha?
During the middle ages a master scribe would make a Bible book that
would be unique, their expression of their faith. It took a while, the Bible is a
big thing and they would not do it unless they were inspired. Europe is full
of these occupying usually national museums or private collections as the
work of the master scribe is valued for the Art. Sometimes that book would then
be transcribed and copied, usually by monasteries and hence the previous
discussion on bored monks.
And when I say calligraphy I am not limiting it to calligraphic hands used
today, the scripts you find on invitations and such, I am referring to the
hands used to make Bibles from the 4th century onwards. For instance in Matthew
chapter 4 where the devil is tempting Jesus with all the world, I wrote the
scripture very austere gaunt looking script in three columns like the codex
Sinaiticus, I was going for the texture of the calligraphy, not the hand. The
hand was inspired by a rule of Saint Benedict in the Bodleian Library from
about 700 AD. Very austere. The calligraphy of the next chapter is
Carolingian because it is the start of Jesus's ministry and is very beautiful in the
ornament and script. I studied these scripts, looking at originals when I have
the opportunity, and it took a long time to figure out how to write them, in
a manner where it is natural to write and not something that is applied.
That way I can concentrate on the inspiration and not the technicalities of
writing in a particular hand. Here is a link to the script in Matthew chapter 4.
But what about the idea of copying and Art? Are there any truly unique and
individual works that are not derived from anything else? Can you have Art
that is completely separate from anything else? Art is a reaction, a
reflection of what we think, a method of communicating thoughts, you cannot separate
yourself completely from any of your experiences, no matter how offensive
they may be to you. And if you could possibly do this, what do you have,
something that has no bearing on anything, no meaning at all?
Beth of course, those Egyptian scribes are my favorite. Sorry for limiting
this to book codex formats. A lot of ancient art was written on decorative
items because writing was a big deal, it was very difficult to do. Or they would
write on fragments of things, just to have something to write upon.
A friend of mine has a stele that I have been trying to get translated, it
was dug up at Ur, is about 5000 years old and depicts a man giving a staff to
another man, probably his son as an inheritance. It could be a land deed,
but the giving of the staff is a sign of inheritance, and this type of thing
is a form of a legal contract, common from that time. The old man has his
hand at the top of the staff and the staff has wings at the top. It is made of
a blue green basalt and is very different from the ground it was taken from,
meaning they imported the stone. It has the cuneiform all over the back of
it. Pictograms, the very first writing was written in the form of pictures.
Even cuneiform is written in different calligraphic hands, it is a matter of
looking at many of them.
So if that same type of contract is found to be on another stone does
that diminish the stele for the art? Its just a copy of a previous contract.
Great depiction of the two men, one has a Babylonian haircut and dress.
Long beards and their feet are posed like Egyptians. Its about 9 inches
square and is 3 inches thick and very heavy.
Now Online - The Bonefolder, Vol. 2, No. 1 at <http://www.philobiblon.com/bonefolder>
For all your subscription questions, go to the
Book_Arts-L FAQ and Archive.
See <http://www.philobiblon.com> for full information