The Writing on the Wall: Calligraffiti

Hey, look. It’s calligraphy! No, it’s graffiti… it’s Calligraffiti!!!  Maybe you’ve seen this style popping up around your town amidst the traditional tags, wildstyles, and wheat pasties – a mixture of something old and something new; born in Amsterdam at the hands of Niels “Shoe” Meulman,it’s making it’s way across the oceans and around the world.




Calligraffiti is a combination of calligraphy and graffiti. Calligraphy is about the art of writing and can have many forms. Whether it be Japanese ancient brush characters, Arabic pictorial scripts, illuminated mediaeval books or swirly quill writing… all calligraphy.

Graffiti is the art of getting your (pseudo) name up in an urban environment. Perfected in New York City and now a worldwide phenomenon.

The fairly new art of Graffiti and its somewhat rigid rules prompt us to look further back into the history of writing. This is exactly what Niels Shoe Meulman has been doing since his teens, and at the beginning of this century he started combining the two. Thus resulting in Calligraffiti: traditional handwriting with a metropolitan attitude.



interested in learning more?  Shoe has published a book and it’s available to the public:

buy it here.

learn more of calligraffiti’s history by peeping out the awesome building cityscape/timeline @


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