Barbara Calzolari was born in Bologna, Italy in 1963. After graduating in graphic design from the ENALC, a school of commercial art, she worked for Bologna's Galleria d’Arte Moderna, and afterwards for the fashion sector. She began to work with large firms in the garment trade and to collaborate with Daniele di Montezemolo and Ferrante Gonzaga on designing collections and developing products for Pirelli, Ferrari, and Ferrero.
Her passion for calligraphy dates from 1993. After meeting Anna Ronchi and Giovanni De Faccio she became a teacher of the Associazione Calligrafica Italiana. In the United States, she studied in greater depth the use of the flexible nib for Spencerian script, participated in a retreat at YMCA University with Michael Sull, and, in 2007, went to Ohio –home of Platt Rogers Spencer– to attend the Advanced Spencerian workshop on this very elegant script of Anglo-Saxon origin that employs strokes and skills accessible only to the most expert calligraphers.
She regularly attends international calligraphy conventions, where she has met and worked alongside Pat Blair, current calligrapher for the White House; Joe Vitolo, master of the flexible nib; and Sheila Waters, founder of the Washington Calligraphers Guild, which Barbara Calzolari has joined. In 2008, Barbara Calzolari applied her skills to the creation of the masterpiece “Deus Caritas est,” a complete work of art in book form, for the Italian art publishing house Marilena Ferrari-FMR. For the same publisher, she engrossed “as a souvenir of the Italy of beauty” the national anthems that the prime minister of Italy wished to present to the heads of state assembled at the G8 Summit in 2009.
She teaches on a regular basis in USA and Europe.
Find out more about her work on her website: Gentle People Calligraphy
Spencerian in Berlin
A calligraphy workshop with Barbara Calzolari