CNN Profiles Former White House “Chief Calligrapher”

Today was the last day of the manuscript unit in my “History and Future of the Book” course. I wish I had come across this article a little sooner!

“As calligraphers, we feel like we’re playing an integral role. The invitation sets the stage for the whole event. Calligraphers are helping, simply, to set the stage for diplomacy,” the former chief calligrapher said.

“Whatever happens, whatever conflicts they have, if you see your name beautifully written on a placard, your nation’s flag on a menu, you can’t help to soften up a bit,” he said. “Protocol is about human interactions, and as calligraphers, it’s our job to introduce creativity and beauty.”

The sheer volume the office produces is extremely high and gets especially busy during the holiday season. One December alone, Paulus calculated that his office hand addressed 19,000 envelopes. –CNN, “The White House chief calligrapher has a higher clearance than Jared Kushner