Calligraphy (from Ancient Greek: κάλλος kallos "beauty" and γραφή graphẽ "writing") is a visual art related to writing. It is the design and execution of lettering with a broad tip instrument or brush in one stroke A contemporary calligraphic practice can be defined as, "the art of giving form to signs in an expressive, harmonious, and skillful manner".
There are several stories in Ruth Venner.
She is a renowned artist and calligrapher and she is recognised internationally for her beautiful works.
Equally, this story could have been her early life asa young girl growing up in Cheshire in the UK, just up the road from Liverpool.
When Ruth was a teenager, she used to go an watch the local pop bands perform. One of them had a strange name, The Beatles.
This story could well have been "I Knew The Beatles Before They We're Famous", but we won't go there.
Ruth grew up in northern England, had a student interest in art, and then moved to London for her first job working for the Aviation Ministry as a clerk, and later with the famous Rank entertainment organisation.
In 1972 she migrated to Australia and, on the journey out, met her lifetime partner Phil, who had originated in South Africa.
As a Ten Pound Migrant (one of the last) Ruth settled in Adelaide and whilst working for the Hotel in Karratha, did some sign work for the pub.
Her flowing talents for her calligraphic future were born!
Mostly self taught, she was influenced along the way by the most famous modern calligrapher Donald Jackson, the Queen's scribe.
It was a long letter of criticism from Jackson that eventually 'inspired' Ruth when she finally realised he would not have gone to such lengths to criticise her if he did not think she was worth 'the effort'.
Another major influence was Dr Lawrence Chan in Adelaide, as well as being a medical doctor he was also an expert calligrapher and painter from the Wu Change Shu School in China. She, took, has visited China on many occasions.
It was no surprise then that Ruth 'married' the influences of both western and oriental calligraphy. It is obvious is most of her works.
Other influences are also evident.
Her poetry is obvious and it features in many of her works. Hearing her recite is an absolute delight. A beautiful tone, diction and emphasis.
A career on stage or reciting would have been an obvious direction.
Ruth's direction has evolved over time.
She says much of it is a 'question of balance' - life and death; men and women; yin and yang; positive and negative; north and south; east and west. Balance, harmony and peace!
"I believe everything has a connection", she says.
"One thing develops into another and everything leads to something else. Things just evolve.
Certainly Ruth Venner has.
Then there are her Goddess and Life theories!
There is the Indian Goddess Sarawata and the Egyptian Goddess Maate, both covering art, music, writing, mathematics and architecture.
These Goddesses feature in her works and some will be featured in her 70th birthday exhibition to be held at the Redland Museum later in the year..
'She Dreamt' is the theme and it will open on Saturday 6th December, which, fortuitously, is Full Moon!
The exhibition will run for the whole of December and January 2015 with the option of extending it if it is very popular. (This has happened previously with Ruth's exhibitions)
Ruth and Phil moved to Macleay Island about six years ago, and they don't plan heading off any time soon, but nothing would surprise.
She plays a major role in local art circles and recognised for her enthusiasm and the quality of her work.