Calligraphy - a new unique project of MVK


Business and Exhibitions magazine №4 (33) April, 2008

The MVK exhibition holding has been in operation for over 16 years. Every new project is characterized by the originality of idea and perfection of its realization. But the company is not only strengthening its market position, MVK feels obliged to engage in socially significant projects that can help in forming a beautiful and healthy society.

Recently the company has launched a new project: the International Exhibition of Calligraphy. In St. Petersburg, in the building of the Russian Academy of Arts, from 16th to 21st September, the most famous calligraphers of Russia and the world will present to the public their masterpieces, hold workshops and seminars, and show everyone this ancient, undeservedly forgotten art. However, the plans of organizers are not limited simply to showing calligraphic works.

“A woman of valor”, Avraham Borshevsky (Israel)

“Troparion of Saint Tsar David Builder”, Levan Chaganava (Georgia)

Director-General of JSC “MVK” and the author of the project, Alexey SHABUROV, told us about his new project and its role in the exhibition industry in details.

Alexey Yuryevich, what is unique about your new project "International Exhibition of Calligraphy?

- Contemporary calligraphers agree that there hasn’t been such a project in Russia for more than 30 years. Our exhibition has its own mission: to form a beautiful and healthy society. A goal of the project is to revive calligraphy in Russia.

This area of art is now unfairly forgotten and it deserves more attention and scrutiny. In Japan, for example, calligraphy is studied as a compulsory subject in the universities of Arts and diplomatic academies. It is absolutely proven that through calligraphy people creatively develop and organize their ideas, because the hand, the thought and the pen are inextricably linked. Many studies and research of this phenomenon have been conducted (ex., at the Research Institute of psychoneurology under the name of Bekhterov).

There are medical reports of foreign experts as well. Soon materials on how calligraphy influences on creativity and development of the thought process will be available on our website

Many famous calligraphers are now in favor of the introduction of special pens instead of ballpoint pens in primary school. It is proven that if a child uses ballpoint pens in the first year of school, it prevents their hands from developing in a balanced way. This may inhibit the formation of thinking in children, so today many primary schools in Japan and China have stopped using ballpoint pens and introduced an intermediate tool between a pen and a marker.

Who will take part in the exhibition and what business program have you prepared?

- We have invited calligraphers from around the world. Today 17 participants from Russia, Belarus, Ukraine, Israel, Syria, Japan and China expressed their wish to participate in the exhibition. The exhibition will feature a separate stand with specialized calligraphy literature, we hope to display about 300 books in Russian and foreign languages.

The project also includes a direct demonstration of calligraphy works. Visitors will be able to see themselves how Japanese and Chinese calligraphy differ from Arabic, and the latter, in its turn, from the Western, so-called Roman calligraphy. One exhibition hall will be devoted to the Russian exposition, and the other will feature foreign authors. Well, and the most interesting part is that we could not simply hold an exhibition of contemporary calligraphy works. All our projects are characterized by their historical orientation. With the support of the Russian State Archive of Ancient Acts, we will present to the public written texts from different historical periods. Visitors will be able to see the formation of writing in ancient Russia.

Unfortunately, there won’t be many works, but if we don’t manage to exhibit some of the originals, we will present their replicas.

The exhibition program includes workshops on calligraphy for professionals and amateurs. Each calligrapher will take on a specific area which he feels confident in, and all visitors, children and adults will be able to get free lessons of calligraphy.

If you don’t mind me asking, how did you get the idea to organize such an unusual exhibition?

- Quite by accident. Sitting at an airport, I read about a wonderful master, Leonid Ivanovich Pronenko - the legend of calligraphy. And so the idea was born to organize an exhibition of calligraphic works and revive this forgotten art in Russia. Our work has aroused great interest; we are already establishing criteria for the participants, as we are limited in space and will be forced to be selective.

What results do you expect from the show?

- Firstly, in accordance with the mission of our project, the development of society must begin from early childhood. Therefore, calligraphy has to become an integral subject of schooling. Calligraphers from Moscow and St. Petersburg have already appealed to us to help organize schools of calligraphy in those cities. It’s not so expensive, and if the budget allows, we will allocate the necessary funds. Secondly, I think that after this project the entire team of the exhibition organizers, and the rest of the MVK team, will stand head and shoulders above on the professional level. As it is very difficult to execute such a non-trivial project, it requires maintaining an extensive correspondence and hold numerous meetings, and to understand the subject. In order to understand what calligraphy is, all our team members are now trained in calligraphy. We will see how it will affect our professional abilities. In general, I am proud of my team members, and therefore I am not afraid to invent and implement original ideas.

When will the presentation of the International Exhibition of Calligraphy be held?

- The presentation of the International Exhibition of Calligraphy will be held on May, 14th at 14:00, at the Crocus Expo, Pavilion № 3: lounge in front of the Hall13. For all questions you can contact by phone 8-800-100-77-70 or see our website

Alexey, and finally a more general question: how do you see the exhibition business develop in the near future?

- I think that the exhibition business in Russia will develop along the same laws as the rest of the world. The main focus of the exhibition will not be on expansion of the area, but the organization of symposia, conferences within the framework of exhibitions, that is, to develop the business program. Organizers will seek the most cost-effective forms to attract visitors, and conferences bring maximum benefit at minimum cost. This form of business events in Russia is not yet developed. Once it is mastered, the amount of exhibition space will be reduced.

Our projects are focused on an extensive business program within the framework of exhibitions, but beyond that many of our exhibitions are unique in nature. They have a certain social significance, their own mission and purpose.


Source: Business and Exhibitions magazine №4 (33) April, 2008

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