"Parma Eldaliéva" is a series of manuscript art books.
All of them are done in original calligraphic scripts and graphic styles devised by Elmenel especially for this project.
~ NEWS: An Exhibition in Newcastle, September 19-25 ~
The First Part
Dedicated to J.R.R.Tolkien's 120th Anniversary
"Parma Eldaliéva I"
The World's First Book in Tengwar
(IMPORTANT UPDATE: July 2nd 2016, in "News"!)
Parma Eldaliéva ("Book of the Elves") is my ongoing art project I started in 2009. It is based on my idea of transforming into works of art featuring originally developed Elven calligraphy a selection of artistic 'Elven transliterations' inspired by J.R.R.Tolkien's works. The "Parma Eldaliéva" art manuscripts offer a unique and tangible multilevel experience of Elvendom, stories, and their atmosphere. They are harmonious in shape, way of making, and purpose to Tolkien's ideals and views in relation to careful and heartfelt storytelling, artistry and craftsmanship, machine-independence, mastery of personal creative skills and their respectful usage for good and worthy purposes. I see those ideals and views as entwined with the very reasons for the creation, existence and purpose of Elven culture and Tengwar themselves. They are also tremendously important for me as a creative human being, a calligrapher and artist, a "little maker" of sorts. "Parma Eldaliéva" is made to be faithful to the spirit of Tolkien's stories and his great poem "Mythopoeia".
The first "Parma Eldaliéva" is an original calligraphic work of art transforming an artistic transliteration inspired by "The Hobbit" and constitutes a 550-page folio volume. It enables the audience to experience an unprecedented closeness to Elvendom and to see books/graphic storytelling from an extraordinary new perspective. I have completed the main manuscript work on it and at present I am working on illumination details. In 2015 I will start focusing more fully on the following parts of "Parma Eldaliéva", and especially on the closely interrelated II and III. I will probably continue working on the fully adorned version of the first "Parma Eldaliéva" on the side. As per initial planning the project's core includes seven original calligraphic art books (more information is available here). In time I will probably add more to them.
I have been striving to create works of art that live in the real world, while bearing the spirit and 'heartbeat' of the world of the stories, and belonging to their visions and purpose. Through what might be called "written minstrelsy" the Parma Eldaliéva manuscripts create an inspired "telling-in-writing"/"portrayal" of the stories that is evocative of their telling in the Hall of Fire. The manuscripts offer a new perspective of the tales, one that feels closer to the world of the characters. They have an aura of authenticity that benefits the appreciation of their contents, offer a new level of tangibility and a novel, closer experience of the associated cultures and civilizations. They also strive to enable a better perception of essential lessons and creative values celebrated by Tolkien's works in an aesthetical (through shapes/forms), ethical (through the way those shapes/forms are made, the machine-independent artistry employed for their creation), and moral way (through the very choice of the contents for which the skill and means of expression are used and the purpose of the whole). Among other things, I hope my work will be beneficial for heightening the sensitivity and awareness of people who are overly dependent on machines for something so innately human, intimate, life-confirming and spiritual as creation, creative development and art, for raising their awareness of the value and importance of technology-independent creativity, experience and skills, and of the worth and beauty of artwork made through such intrinsic abilities.
Tolkien's works champion heartfelt and unique expression through uttered or written words and letters, through an individual's innate artistry and craftsmanship. They celebrate the machine-independent original creativity, artistic skills and power of imaginative expression that are a human being's birthright, the joy and value of the mastery of those skills and their usage for good and worthy purposes. Much as Elven culture in general, I see Tengwar, their history, cultural background and purpose, the way they are meant to be used, as a symbol of those machine-independent creativity, art, talents, wisdom, beauty and development. I felt irresistibly compelled to try to better through my work the awareness towards those tremendously important, yet nowadays sadly overlooked aspects of Tolkien's works. Even as they are an essential part of the stories' foundation, of their very 'heartbeat', they seem to be regrettably neglected or unseen by a large part of the stories' modern audience. Thus, "Parma Eldaliéva" is dedicated also to art and creation, mastery of innate skills and creativity, and especially to the Arts of Storytelling-in-Writing, and of Writing/Calligraphy itself.
Ever since its beginning this project has been my personal and professional top priority. In addition to doing the work on it, I have been supporting it by myself. Now, however, I would like to kindly ask for the support of those of you willing and able to grant it. If you see in this project's works a thing of beauty that is deserving of existence and if you are able and willing to, then please support it!
I hope my work will be a nice and welcome surprise for all those who love J.R.R.Tolkien's works and cherish good storytelling and Art!
February 8, 2014
Updated: December 12, 2014, June 20, 2015, February 29, 2016