Events at Reed

August 23

Lecture: Paul Herrera, "Father Edward M. Catich: Master Calligrapher and Stone Carver"

4 p.m., Psychology 105

Edward M. Catich was a leading authority on the Roman Imperial letter form, as found on the Trajan Column in Rome. The Trajan Inscription has been generally regarded by paleographers, calligraphers, and others interested in the letter arts as the finest example of Roman monumental lapidary inscription, and is accepted as the basic model of the Roman alphabet. 

Father Catich began his paleographic and epigraphic research on the inscription in 1935 as he studied for the priesthood in Rome. He returned to Rome many times over the course of his life to gather materials, which he published in two groundbreaking works: Letters Redrawn from the Trajan Inscription (1961) and Origin of the Serif (1968).

A highly regarded author, stone cutter, calligrapher, photographer, musician, liturgical artist, historian, and lecturer, Catich taught at St. Ambrose College in Davenport, Iowa (now St. Ambrose University) for over 40 years. Catich is familiar to the Portland calligraphy community because of his relationship with Reed professor Lloyd J. Reynolds. At Reynolds’ invitation, Catich produced two lapidary inscriptions that are now part of the permanent collection of the Portland Art Museum, as well as several carved inscriptions on the Reed College campus, including the lintel of Eliot Hall. Catich also trained Reynolds’ successor at Reed, calligraphy instructor Robert J. Palladino.