Montegrappa’s series of Genio Creativo limited edition writing instruments honours artistic giants including Antonio Stradivari, Giuseppe Verdi and Salvador Dali. By virtue of his brilliance and pro- lificacy as a painter, writer, philosopher, theologian and poet, Kahlil Gibran is a peer among these maestri. For his masterpiece, The Prophet, he will remain forever a literary giant.
Montegrappa has collaborated closely with the Gibran National Committee, and renowned Lebanese artist Katja Traboulsy in the creation of this homage to Gibran’s legacy.
The GNC was established in Bsharreh, to protect and continue his legacy after his death, and Montegrappa is supporting the Gibran legacy through this project with a donation to the GNC for each pen sold. Gibran instructed that, on his death, the royalties and copyrights to his materials would be owned by his hometown, Bsharreh, Lebanon.
Founded in 1935, the GNC is a non-profit corporation holding the exclusive rights to manage Kahlil Gibran’s copyright in and to his literary and artistic works. Gibran died in New York City on April 10, 1931, at the age of 48. He never became an American citizen, because he loved his birthplace too much. Before his death, Gibran expressed the wish that he be buried in Lebanon. This wish was fulfilled in 1932, when Mary Haskell and her sister Mariana purchased the Mar Sarkis Monastery in Lebanon, which has since become the Gibran Museum.Written next to Gibran’s grave is the inscription he asked to serve as his epitaph.“I am alive like you, and I am standing beside you. Close your eyes and look around, you will see me in front of you.”
The pens are made of resin in a colour reminiscent of the blue, black and grey prominent in Gibran’s paintings. This rich, dark hue is accented with palladium plated trim, while the fountain pen nib is two tone 18K solid gold and bears the famous face believed by many to be Gibran’s ultimate self-portrait.
All pens feature a pocket clip in the form of a hand with a solitary Sapphire set as the eye on the open palm, named the Divine World by Gibran himself. The face adorning the nib and the palm moulded into the clip are the most recognised visual references of Gibran’s art.
The base of the cap is inscribed with the writer’s signature, and the top of the cap bears the emblem of a ‘K’ overlaid on a ‘G’, a symbol found in the corner of many of Gibran’s paintings, his own personal logo.
In honour of the year of the birth of this legendary writer, the Kahlil Gibran limited edition consists of 1883 examples each of fountain pens, roller balls and ball point pens. Each series of pens will be numbered 1/1883 to 1883/1883. Hugely talented and universally loved, Gibran Kahlil (6 January 1883 – 10 April 1931) was one of the Arab world’s greatest polymaths. He left a legacy that lives on not only through his own work, but also through the inspiration he has ignited in others.
Gibran was born in the town of Bsharreh in the north of modern-day Lebanon (then part of Mount Lebanon Mutasarrifate, Ottoman Empire). His mother Kamila was a daughter of a priest. As a result of his family’s poverty, Gibran received no formal schooling during his childhood in Lebanon. However, priests visited him regularly and taught him about the Bible, as well as other languages. Many of Gibran’s writings deal with Christianity, especially on the topic of spiritual love. But his mysticism is a convergence of several different influences: Christianity, Islam, Sufism, Judaism and theosophy.
His knowledge of Lebanon’s turbulent history, with its destructive factional struggles, strengthened his belief in the fundamental unity of religions. He wrote: “You are my brother and I love you. I love you when you prostrate yourself in your mosque, and kneel in your church and pray in your synagogue. You and I are sons of one faith the Spirit.”
In the Arab world, he is regarded as a literary and social rebel standing against ineffective society traditions. His romantic style was at the heart of a renaissance in modern Arabic literature, with his “prose poetry” a departure from the classical school. His first book published by Alfred A. Knopf was ‘The Madman’, a slim volume of aphorisms and parables written in biblical cadence somewhere between poetry and prose. Gibran’s most noted work ‘The Prophet’ has been translated into over forty different languages and has never been out of print.
Misfortune fell upon Gibran’s family because of his father’s gambling debts and imprisonment for embezzlement, which led to the family’s property being confiscated by the authorities. Kamila Gibran chose to follow the many Lebanese who immigrated to the United States in 1895, taking with her Kahlil, his younger sisters Mariana and Sultana, and his elder half-brother Peter. They settled in Boston, which at the time boasted the second-largest Syrian-Lebanese community in the United States.
School officials placed the 12-year-old Gibran in a special class for immigrants to learn English. He was also enrolled in an art school at a nearby settlement house. A publisher used some of Gibran’s drawings for book covers in 1898.
Gibran’s mother, along with his elder brother Peter, wanted him to absorb more of his own heritage, and not just Western culture.
At the age of fifteen, Gibran returned to his homeland to study at a Maronite-run preparatory school and a higher-education institute in Beirut (Al-Hikma School). He started a student
literary magazine with a classmate and was elected “college poet”.
Gibran remained there for several years before returning to Boston in 1902. Two weeks before he returned to Boston, his sister Sultana died of tuberculosis at the age of 14. The year after, Peter died of the same disease and his mother died of cancer. His sister Marianna supported Gibran and herself by working as a dressmaker. Gibran’s early talent with drawing and watercolour was further developed when he attended art school in Paris from 1910 to 1912. The first art exhibition of his drawings took place in 1904 in Boston. During this exhibition, Gibran met Mary Haskell, a respected headmistress ten years his senior. The two formed an important friendship that lasted the rest of Gibran’s life. While most of Gibran’s early writings were in Arabic, much of his work published after 1918 was in English. That year, his first book published by Alfred A. Knopf was The Madman, a slim volume of aphorisms and parables written in biblical cadence somewhere between poetry and prose.Gibran’s most noted work, The Prophet, is the story of the Almustafa, who has lived in the city of Orphalese for 12 years and is about to board a ship which will carry him home. He is stopped by a group of people, with whom he discusses topics such as life and the human condition. The book is divided into chapters dealing with both the spiritual and the mundane.
His observations dealt with all aspects of life. Passages discussed love and marriage, children and the family, giving, eating and drinking, work, joy and sorrow, houses, clothes, commerce, cri- me and punishment, laws, freedom, reason and passion, pain, self-knowledge, teaching, friend- ship, talking, time, good and evil, prayer, pleasure, beauty, religion and death.
Translated into more than 40 languages,The Prophet has sold over 100 million copies. Of an ambitious first printing of 2,000 in 1923, Knopf sold 1,159 copies. The demand for The Prophet doubled the following year — and doubled again the year after that. Since then, annual sales have risen steadily: from 12,000 in 1935 to 111,000 in 1961 to 240,000 in 1965. Worldwide, The Prophet sells more than 5000 copies a week.
Gibran painted numerous works in his trademark lyrical style, which reflects the influence of symbolism.
Several memorials have been built in the honor of the legend, including the Gibran Memorial Garden in Washington D.C., a memorial plaque in Boston, Massachusetts and the ‘Bust of Gibran’ in Belo Horizonte, Brazil. Gibran was buried in Mar Sarkis Monastery in Lebanon. Written next to his grave are the words: "I am alive like you, and I am standing beside you. Close your eyes and look around, you will see me in front of you.
Khalil Gibran Fountain Pen
Khalil Gibran Ballpoint Pen
Khalil Gibran Rollerball Pen