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Beach calligraphy by our friend and artist from South Africa Andrew van der Merwe, beautiful works in nature

In Uncategorized on June 3, 2011 by Humanitari©

Andrew does sand calligraphy with an artistry that makes anyone stand still, his work fits perfect this stunning NYC weekend, dreamy and peaceful art. Below is his artist statement:

The Beach Calligraphy of Andrew van der Merwe

I am a calligrapher by profession and carving fantastical letters all over the beach is a welcome break from working at a desk on small pieces of paper. The tools and techniques are ones I have evolved over the past eight years. Before that, like anyone else, I used sticks and shells and object found on the beach. Much of my work has the appearance of letters carved in stone but it is completely temporal. I call it calligraphy, not carving, because the letters are cut directly and at a speed close to that of writing. The forms are mostly a function of the movement.
I like to carve short poems or just words and phrases that paint a cultural picture. I also enjoy carving people’s names for them. Most of all I like to work in an asemic way, simply playing with African writing systems such as Shumom, the Mende syllabary or Tifinagh of the Berber of North Africa. I also like to invent my own pseudo writing systems. This is a matter of taking an essential form and playing with it the way a musician might play with a theme – turning it, reversing it breaking it and rejoining it differently, etc.

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One Response to “Beach calligraphy by our friend and artist from South Africa Andrew van der Merwe, beautiful works in nature”

  1. Again, thank you Leandro for introducing me (us) to this artist and his work. It is gestural but with a sense of control that belies the use of sand and beach. Evanescent I suppose when the tide comes in, giving time a role in the work and its existence. Very beautiful and tender and strong.

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