PATRICIA BARTH

PATRICIA BARTH

Calligrapher and Family Tree Designer

Patricia was born in Tasmania in 1951. She completed her formative education and Teacher Training in Launceston. After a short time in the Education Department, the encouragement of her father to visit the country of her heritage resulted in her spending the years 1974 – 1981 in Zurich, Switzerland.
Teaching English provided her with regular employment, but she was always aware of another calling. The love of lettering was implanted by the Germanic books her parents had in the home and in particular the family tree which her mother’s family had commissioned in the 50’s.

The study of Topography was only available to full time students in Zurich. Patricia had to support herself so instead she went to Malaga to learn the language and culture of Spain - her second passion. The lifestyle and culture of the Spanish reminded her so much of Australia, she decided to return to Australia in 1981, complete with nibs and alphabets to work on. Tasmania did not offer a future in lettering so she went to Melbourne in 1982 where she located the Calligraphy Society of Victoria through a chance meeting with friends of Charles Miller, a well known Victorian Calligrapher.

Within two years Patricia had established the “SCRIPTORIUM CALLIGRAPHY STUDIO” in Brighton and taught some of the first classes in Melbourne. The business slowly grew. The demand for calligraphy in the 80’s continued to grow. Each year she travelled to England and / USA to attend Summer Schools or Conferences to further her skills. In 1988 Patricia opened her first commercial studio in Middle Park. This was the first opportunity for her to display her work to the public.

After her marriage to genealogist Nick Vine Hall in 1991 Patricia travelled annually to USA to lecture in Family History Graphics (a new subject). Together with Nick she opened the first Family History Gallery in Albert Park, Victoria in August 1991. This created a lot of interest in family tree design and became Patricia’s speciality. During the 90’s she exhibited her work widely at Genealogical conferences around Australia.

Since 1982 Patricia has designed approx. 222 family trees. From very simple four- generation charts to complex designs over 32 generations………nothing is too difficult a challenge. The aim behind Patricia’s work is to create an interesting family tree for display in the family home, using calligraphy and graphics (drawings, maps, photos, signatures,).Each tree requires individual attention and takes time to create. The result is well worth the effort and becomes a family heirloom to be enjoyed through the generations.

She keeps herself abreast of the trends in calligraphy as a fine art by attending workshops with all overseas tutors brought to Australia by the Calligraphy Society at their annual Summer Schools in Winter. She has studied with Sheila Waters, Brody Neuenschwander, Carl ROhrs, Michael Clarke, Lyn Kerr, Denis Brown, Peter Thornton, Sue Hufton, Christopher Haanes and many others over the last 15 years.

Patricia is able to do many other commissions such as poetry, animal pedigrees, philosophical quotations, retirement presentations, book inscriptions, wedding albums, memorial books, memory books, christening gifts, guest folders , cards for that special occasion etc. She also has book- binding skills, learnt at Roehampton Institute, London, during her year of study to obtain the Certificate of Calligraphy and Bookbinding in 1994/5. This was an invaluable course for her.

Since 1998 Patricia has been working from a studio/gallery in her home in Elsternwick, Melbourne concentrating on the family trees. She is actively involved in the activities of the Calligraphy Society of Victoria.

Her other major interests include philosophy, reading, opera, classical music, cooking and gardening.

www.familytree.net.au
patricia.barth@optusnet.com.au