A calligram is text arranged in such a way that it forms a thematically related image. It can be a poem, a phrase, a portion of scripture, or a single word; the visual arrangement can rely on certain use of the typeface, calligraphy or handwriting, for instance along non-parallel and curved text lines, or in shaped paragraphs. The image created by the words illustrates the text by expressing visually what it says, or something closely associated; it can also, on purpose, show something contradictory with the text or otherwise be misleading.
Visual Artist Mirjam Polman makes calligrams in which hundreds or even thousands of handwritten words are processed into art.
José Juan Tablada wrote a book of Spanish-language calligrams.
Calligram of a tiger in Arabic script
Calligram of a snake in Georgian script
Calligram about the Eiffel Tower by Guillaume Apollinaire
Biggest Calligram in the World, part of the permanent exhibition of the Valencian Museum of Ethnology.
- Deme, Zoltan (1995). "Poem-miniatures". Chords of Scales: Selected Fictions, Essays, and Studies. Warwick Township, N.Y: Universe Pub. ISBN 9635500726. LCCN 2003278749.
- Kajima, Shōzō (1972). Post-War Japanese Poetry. Harmondsworth: Penguin Books. ISBN 0140421459. OCLC 622904. (with many Japanese calligrams)
- Neef, Sonja A.J. (2000). Kalligramme: Zur Medialität Einer Schrift : Anhand Von Paul Van Ostaijens De Feesten Van Angst En Pijn (in German). Amsterdam: ASCA Press. ISBN 90-76123-04-7.
- A collection of calligrams by Laura Ruggeri
- Mirjam Polman - Official website Calligram art
- Curved text generator