Iranian Graphic Designer Resurrects Endangered Kufic Calligraphy
Publish Date: 11/11/2015 Code: 46536

Iranian Graphic Designer Resurrects Endangered Kufic Calligraphy

To know the importance of Kufic calligraphy is to learn that most of the earliest surviving copies of the Quran, from the 8th to the 10th century, were written in Kufic, with the exception of the latest discovered oldest copy kept in the University of Birmingham in the UK that is in Hijazi script.


Suddenly the Kufic style was lost for centuries and normal pens could not write it.

This is how the 46-year-old Iranian, Seyed Mohammad Vahid Mousavi Jazayeri, a master calligrapher and graphic designer, comes into focus.

Deep interest

He has taken a particular personal interest in the Kufic script and devoted years to independent research, visiting archaeological locations, historic buildings and cemeteries, mosques, libraries and museums to study the script through direct contact.

“Finally, his professional interest in script and calligraphy stimulated his discovery of the historic method for cutting the Kufic pen, and he has published books, some of them teaching others on how to do it,” says his brother, Mohammad Hosein M Jazayeri.

The script was called Kufi because it was thought to have been developed in Kufah in Iraq—an early Islamic centre of culture.

As Vahid keeps exhibiting his artistic skills at the Sharjah International Book Fair (SIBF), in Hall 4 under the stand; “Arabic Kufic Calligraphy by Vahid Jazayeri-Kuficpedia and Blautopf Publishing – US”, Mohammad engages visitors.


Vahid’s efforts of spreading knowledge keeps him trotting the globe as a visiting lecturer or featuring in exhibitions such as SIBF and workshops.

A holder of BSc in Graphics with an Excellence Degree in Art from the Minister of Culture (equivalent to PhD), Vahid has a penchant for researching on ancient manuscripts and calligraphic inscriptions of ancient buildings and objects such as potteries, coins and gravestones.

Mohammad Jazayeri says that Vahid’s special finding and work is the revelation of the “secrets of the lost pen of Primary Kufic writing after hundreds of years.” It is detailed in Kufic Encyclopedia (2005).

Vahid is also versed in other styles of calligraphy such as Naskh, Thulth and Modern Typography.

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