In earlier times, large calligraphic installations for mosques and other buildings generally involved painting the text on leather or oil cloth or directly on the wall. I have developed a process for large works suitable for installation using a fine synthetic canvas called sign cloth. The material is extremely durable and does not stretch or deform. The finished piece can be framed on stretchers, as with an oil painting, or glued directly on a wall by a wallpaper specialist. The result appears to have been painted on the wall, yet it can be removed if necessary.
These pieces may be as small as 10 inches wide or as long as 27 feet. Each must be designed specifically for the venue where it will be displayed. This requires careful consultation between the calligrapher and the client, as not every text can fit on every size. The process involves writing the text on paper and enlarging it to the precise size required. The sign cloth is painted with acrylic paint that has been specially compounded for color and strength. The text is then stenciled onto the painted sign cloth and completed with gold leaf.
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