What is a philogram?

A philogram is a sign that has been derived from a thought; an individual word that can be compared to a Chinese character. A philogram always stands for an idea, never for syllables or a chain of random letters.

Creating such signs derived from words (philograms)―which, of course, finds no comparison in European writing (or calligraphy)―can be found in the Zen Buddhistic manner of writing called Shodo.

Dorendorff philograms are a product of extreme concentration.

They take several days to complete, sometimes even weeks. These signs are truly authentic, which means that they are entirely consistent with the handwriting aesthetics of Susanne Dorendorff. They are consistent with the handwriting aesthetics of their creator.

In contrast to typographic alphabets, calligraphic lettering, as well as all letters of the alphabet and characters, no philogram may ever be copied, changed, or used. (Not only are individual graphic works protected by copyright, but also their very archetype.) People must create their very own philograms. And that’s the point of making philograms in the first place.

Susanne Dorendorff is a professional philographic artist who has accumulated an impressive number of these signs. She has been varying them in her work since 1986.


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