National Center for Calligraphy

    Presentation of the center

    The National Center of Calligraphy is a rare organization in the Arab and Islamic world. Its real concerns are Arabic calligraphy and Islamic decoration. That is why this center organizes frequently trainings and animations in order to preserve and develop our cultural heritage.

    Thanks to its long and rich experience, the center has become a reference in this field and occupies a key position in our national culture with its great participation in the Arts of calligraphy and the goals for which it was created.

    The Center has been under the administrative and financial cover of the National Institute of Heritage and the Ministry of Culture and Heritage Conservation. Its premises are located in the Zawiya of Sidi ‘Alî Shîha in Halfaouine, Bab Swika.

    In addition to the free training sessions dedicated to the calligraphic arts in different types; kûfî, naskhî, thuluthî, ruq‘a, maghribî, dîwânî et nasta‘lîq, Islamic decoration…, varied activities were organized in the Center including exhibitions, workshops, competitions, lectures etc. The Center was not only active at the national level, but it also participated in many events at the international level.

    The National Center of Calligraphy has become the destination of different foreign visitors (Africans, Europeans, and Asians living in Tunisia) in addition to, of course, the Tunisian visitors of all ages who come to the Center for trainings or to take part the Center’s activities. The diversity of the visitors enables the Center to enlarge its relationships with other foreign cultural organizations.

    The Center has created its own library, which contains very rich and specialized content thanks to gifts and participations of different cultural and national organizations like universities. It also has its own artistic paintings made by teachers and their students, as well as its visitors.

    In 2014, the Center took in charge the creation of a corpus of Islamic inscriptions in Tunisia, starting from inventory works of written inscriptions to introducing them into a database for the benefit of the public on the Center’s website to be finally published in different blogs.

    The Center hopes to improve

    the methodology of the Arts of calligraphy trainings, to republish its scientific magazine “Fannu al-dhâd” and sign partnerships with different organizations in order to organize different events and create new scientific projects.

    The Center’s location: Dar El Mounestiri

    Since the beginning of its activities in 1998, the National Center of Calligraphy has been located in the Zawiya of Sîdî Alî Shîha, which is in the quarters of al-Halfawine, Bab Souika in the city of Tunis. The Zawiya went under maintenance works in order to host the different activities and training sessions of the Center. This Zawiya is considered to be one of the largest ones in terms of space and architectural luxury. It was classified at the beginning of the XIXth century under the orders of Mohamed Nacer Bacha Bey on January 25, 1922.

    On 6 November 2017, the headquarters of the center was changed to (Dar Mounestiri ) 9 Nhaj Mounestiri near the mosque of Sidi Mehrez.


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