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Olga Varlamova

Olga  Varlamova

Olga Varlamova

St.Petersburg, Russia

Calligrapher, graphic-artist

Beauty of calligraphy

No one would deny the beauty of calligraphy. What is the secret of this beauty and is it the beauty which is the reason for attractiveness of the art? Let us consider these questions.

Calligraphic pages give us unprecedented joy and feeling of soaring. However, in this case beauty can be reasonably explained.

Calligraphy is a kind of graphic art where the line plays the crucial role: its direction, course, thickness and character of edges. Properly following the flow of a line we feel the movement of an artist’s hand.

Details and nuances are of great importance in calligraphy. A tiny shift and change in form give a feeling of movement or calmness, sharpness or softness.

Second, I would like to talk about the charming beauty of calligraphy as an activity and consider it from the view point of a person engaged in this activity.

First I see a white or black sheet of paper, put a dot and start a line. And then the line as if starting to grow, a calligraphic instrument starts dancing and a flat sheet becomes three dimensional. Calligraphy studies are the creation of a new world. When I create a calligraphic composition I am completely absorbed by the space of the sheet.

Third, it is worthwhile mentioning here the positive influence of calligraphy on the environment.

The beauty of calligraphy is not passive; it is the kind of beauty which encourages the creator to change oneself and the world. Otherwise calligraphy wouldn’t have been attributed the sacred mission by various nations.

A close interrelation between work on the letter and work on oneself is clear when one starts to improve an autograph. An autograph is like an auto portrait. One can hate one’s autograph and use it every day. An ugly and alien in character autograph is a big problem. First it is necessary to see in a disharmonic autograph a germ of future beauty which can be absolutely unpredictable. I think that most of us are not eager to fully change oneself or refuse oneself – we have a lot of kindness in us. We mustn’t really change our autographs but use the good sides of them and get rid of unpleasant things in them. This is the way to preserve an autograph’s individuality and improve its evil character. Polishing our autographs we work on ourselves. The same with handwriting.

As far as we are dealing with all kinds of scriptures, words and texts every day, the beautiful calligraphy can be present everywhere whenever we want it to be. A calligraphic form very well conveys the meaning of the word and the form of its signs can reflect any event.

A human being engaged in calligraphy never goes into the shell of one kind of art. In my case the beauty of calligraphy stimulated my interest in music and poetry. Calligraphy studies is not an escapism but the clue to self-improvement in other spheres as well.

Olga Varlamova,
St. Petersburg, Russia, 2009

Author works

Psalm 8

Paper for museum storage, black and coloured ink for calligraphy, quills, brush, 39,5х60 cm, 2010

From the books of the priest Valery Dyachkov

Ex libris. Coloured paper, ink, sharp-pointed nib pen, 8.85x22.49 cm, 2009

From the books by priest Valery Dyachkov and Mother Nina

Ex libris. Coloured paper, ink, sharp-pointed nib pen, 9.78x23.3 cm, 2009

From the books by Maksim Tychkov

Ex libris, Coloured paper, ink, sharp-pointed nib pen, 3x6.5 cm, 2009

From the choir books of Borovichsky Holy Ghost Monastery

Ex libris. Coloured paper, ink, sharp-pointed nib pen, 8.9x9.05 cm, 2009

Let my prayer be perfected

Calligraphic composition on a motif of hieromonk Roman. Paper, black and coloured ink, sharp-pointed nib metal pens, 40x60 cm, 2009

The Beatitudes

Coloured paper, ink, broad-nib metal pens, drawing pen, 29x40 cm, 2009

Project mission: to form a beautiful and healthy society

Paper, black ink, sharp-pointed nib metal pens, 42x29.7 cm, 2008

Calligraphy. The project goal is to restore the lost art of calligraphy in Russia

Paper, coloured and black ink, sharp-pointed nib metal pens, 29x37 cm, 2008


Black paper, tempera, watercolours, pastel, brush, drawing pen, 28x50 cm, 2009

Сopy-books. Part One

St. Petersburg, 20x29 cm, 2008

Glory to God in the highest...

Paper, coloured ink, pens, 29x41 cm, 2009


Paper, black paint spray can, black ink, white tempera, retouch, chalk, broad-nib metal pens, drawing pen, 42x29.9 cm, 2009

We have a heritage worth saving

Paper, black and coloured ink, sharp-pointed nib metal pens, 42x29.7 cm, 2008

Hallelujah (hieromonk Roman (Matyushin))

Blue paper, black and white ink, 56x43 cm, 2008

Arguments and facts

Ink, sharp-pointed nib and broad-nib pens, 42x29 cm, 2008


Paper, ink, pens, 29x41 cm, 2007

Old Russian Cyrillic Cursive Handwriting

Brush, pen, ink, 31x44 cm, 2007

My sweet angel

Black paper, white ink, pointed pen, 32x50 cm, 2008

O Heavenly King

Cotton paper, black and white calligraphic ink, feathers, brush, 28x56 cm, 2010

Church Slavonic Ornate Lettering

Blue cardboard, gold ink, white tempera, broad nib pens, sharp-pointed nib pen, reed brush, 35x67.5 cm, 2010

Easter bookmarks

"Easter Bookmarks". Paper, tempera, ink, broad pens, pointed pen, pointed brush, 58x44.3 cm, 2014.

“Prayer for Peace”. Triptych.

Paper, ink, gouache, crayons, broad-nib metal pens, pointed brush, 3 sheets of 46х65 cm size, 2014

Brusilov's Breakthrough

Paper, ink, gouache, broad nibs, pointed nib, pointed brush, 405 x 510 mm, 2015-2016

The Battle of Navarino

Paper, ink, gouache, broad nibs, pointed nib, pointed brush, 405 x 510 mm, 2015-2016
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Words Of Wisdom
Calligraphy is a kind of music not for the ears, but for the eyes.
(V. Lazursky)