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Sunday, April 17, 2011


Art chirography is all over the place (though not so easy to find via Google-image search; it's the kind of thing you stumble upon when you're not really looking for it), and a lot more common than I thought back when I posted about it some time ago (which post, by the way, is the most popular post on The Wall by a thousand percent, literally ).  A little different from concrete poetry, the chirographic side, perhaps less poetic, and in a way, more onomatopoeic, is more the word done-up to look like what the word is, like the word "car" shaped like a car (often called "word art," and more than what MS Word means by it).  A really pretty stunning example I saw recently was at my son's grade school, where there is a series of prints, artfully framed, on the walls of one hallway depicting each of the seven continents, each continent's name spelled out and shaped (like that "car" car) like the continent itself.  Of course, I think we've all done this in grade school, and even high school, art classes, but it's also a not-so-uncommon trope of graphic artists and advertisers.  While this is perhaps a stretch--more a blend of the concrete poetry and chirography--the website wordle.net is a blast to play around with, and I highly recommend it (here's what I did just a few minutes ago), if less for the artistic/literary benefit then more for just the simple addictive fun of it.

Then there's the stuff that some people call picture puzzles, my favorite of which is simply:


--or the "rebus."


as well as some brilliant samples posted by my sister,
who's much more skilled than I am at finding stuff
like this


Finally, two more sources of a sort of art chirography or (ew) graphically representational words are the classic Magnetic Poetry kits and my personal preference among thesauri, of all things: Visual Thesaurus.


  1. I always like the Washington State University Cougars logo for this: http://www.sportslogos.net/logo.php?id=2724

  2. Hey, that's fantastic! And exactly what I'm talking about. Thanks.


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