Watch | The last of Delhi's calligraphy brigade

Old Delhi's Urdu Bazaar was once the go-to place to find katibs or calligraphers. But the computerisation of print media in the 1980s and 1990s has left many of these skilled craftsmen jobless.

Now, the once vibrant katib community of Old Delhi’s Urdu Bazaar, has shrunk to a mere three.

Back in the day, these katibs were the stars of the vernacular Urdu press. It relied on them to transcribe material for newspapers and magazines.

Arabic calligraphy has also been used to embellish wood, stone structures, ceramics and textiles.

Now, the COVID-19 pandemic has left them in greater distress.

Despite their declining fortunes, calligraphy remains an integral part of south Asia’s artistic heritage. Calligraphy is still highly visible in India’s public spaces.

Especially in Mughal-era monuments and all contemporary Islamic places of worship. Among the most well-known examples is the Taj Mahal.

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Printable version | Jul 27, 2021 5:04:07 AM |

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