The art of calligraphy

Connecting with each other, their childhood memories and their inner creativity through the art of calligraphy, is a group of Korean seniors in Auckland.

Women enjoying calligraphy class

They were attending a class at Silver School, run by the Korean Positive Ageing Charitable Trust (KPACT).

Calligraphy was a compulsory subject at school for many of the members of the group.

However, it had been quite some time since they’d last put a calligraphy brush to paper.

Example of calligraphy

“We haven’t done this in a long time” commented one woman.

“It’s fun to see that we can still write these characters.”

Another admitted she hadn’t done calligraphy since elementary school. That was more than 50 years ago.

One of the group turned to her neighbour to comment “[Yours] is much better than mine! You have a good memory.”

The two laughed as they examined each other’s work, and exchanged tips on how to get the best clean strokes.

An example of the work of the class is pictured (right).

Sylvia Park, who regularly attends Silver School, says she really enjoys the weekly class.

“I like being with the local community. We do lots of diverse activities.

"I really enjoy the dance and cooking activities.

A few months ago we played Korean drums at an Age Concern event and we also started some line-dancing."

Close connections

Ms Park enjoys catching up with her friends in classes but also likes the visitors who come to the school.

“It’s great to meet with different organisations that come to [Silver School]. We can learn what’s happening outside the Korean community.

Silver School aims to get Korean seniors to interact with different cultural communities and ethnic groups.

Seungjae Yoo teaching calligraphy

It is one of the services provided by the Korean Positive Ageing Charitable Trust, along with health promotion, social work services, community work and volunteering opportunities.

KPACT’s aim is to help Korean families learn about New Zealand culture, celebrate multiculturalism and assist to Korean families settle well in New Zealand.

You can find out more about KPACT by following them on their Facebook page: