Calligraphy The Islamic Art Essay

1267 words - 6 pages

Calligraphy - The Islamic ArtBefore Mohamed Zakariya copies the words of the Koran, he washes his face, hands and feet as if he were going to pray. The pen he writes with is made from a reed that was buried in manure for four years to achieve the correct red colour. His ink is soot ground to powder, a process he describes as shoulder-busting labour. The paper is dyed with tea, coated with egg whites, which makes it easier to correct mistakes, then set aside to age for at least a year. Muslim calligraphers have worked this way since the 7th century.The results can be beautiful but may seem caught in the past when viewed in "Letters in Gold: Ottoman Calligraphy from the Sakip Sabanci ...view middle of the document...

"Written down, the words point us toward the sacred, to where our hearts ought to be. That makes words the most sacred signs we have," Novak says. Zakariya, 56, first studied calligraphy in 1980 after he converted from Christianity to Islam. That led him to the Centre for Islamic History, Art and Culture in Istanbul, Turkey. Raised in Ventura, now living in Arlington, Va., he is considered one of the most accomplished calligraphers in the United States. Yet he often returns to Turkey to refresh his skills. He wrote the script that decorates the banners advertising the LACMA show, translated the catalogue from Turkish and loaned his handmade paper for the exhibit. He's also giving lecture-demonstrations at the museum. The texts he chooses are the same that the Ottoman masters have copied for 500 years. There are phrases from poetry, the sayings of the prophet Muhammad and especially the words of the holy book."The Koran is always best written in calligraphy," Zakariya says. "A carefully handwritten copy contains a spiritual overflowing. The calligrapher's religious faith has a lot to do with it." He compares such a copy to a more typical version, set in mechanical type."It's like a Mozart clarinet concerto played on a harmonica," he says. "It's just not the same."Royal edicts were the only political documents significant enough to be written in sacred script during the Ottoman Empire. Sometimes, politics and religion intersected. Sultan Mahmud II, who ruled from 1808 to 1839, was a student of calligraphy. One of his works, on view at LACMA, reads:"I cannot have success except with the help of God."The sultan's bold, ornate signature was designed for him by his teacher, Mustafa Rakim. Some of the greatest calligraphers, however, wrote in small letters and attached humble comments to their names. "Dust at the feet of the prophet" or " the humble slave," for example. Others signed in the tiniest letters imaginable. Just like teachers in the age of the sultans, Zakariya trains students without charge. Born in Afghanistan, Ferozuddin Noori, 27, was 12 when he started. Noori now lives in Richmond, Va., not far from Zakariya's home. He practices about six hours a week and also attends college. After 13 years, he sees himself as a beginner. "The teacher has a very important job," he says. "He has to keep the student going and help him fall in love with calligraphy, even though it can be frustrating."It is not unusual for a beginner to rewrite a single phrase for months at a time and never get it...

Find Another Essay On Calligraphy - The Islamic Art

What features in Islamic Art, and Architecture make it distinctively different from previous cultures.

895 words - 4 pages assortment of patterns, colors, and sizes, these rugs were considered with religion in mind, and were referred to as a prayer rug, which would provide a clean place to pray). Islamic art has focused on the drawing of patterns and Arabic calligraphy, rather than on figures, because it is feared by many Muslims that the depiction of the human form, considered worshiping, is a sin against God, and outlawed in the Qur’an. Today modern art historians

Introduction to Chinese Caligraphy Essay

1936 words - 8 pages Chinese calligraphy Introduction Every single culture has a way of representing itself. The most different part between China and Australian is the language. Chinese word (han-zi) is hieroglyphic words, and it has its own art style: Chinese calligraphy. Additionally, Chinese calligraphy (shu fa) is a crucial documentation, which is able to learn about history through today. The Chinese calligraphy is among the world’s best-documented and

Progression Of Islamic Art

1292 words - 5 pages There exist three basic components of traditional Islamic art: calligraphy, geometric patterns, and floral and vegetal motifs. These three stylistic tools are beautifully rendered and masterfully integrated into complex works of art, but there is no question that artistic expression is severely limited under these categorizations. However, this limitation stems from Islamic theology and concept of art. The main reason for the limitation

Islamic Culture: Achievements in Various Fields

772 words - 4 pages Quran didn’t let Muslims praise their “idols.” As an alternative the Muslims painted, or created pictures or murals of their “idols.” Also, an art called calligraphy which is a lot of elegant ways of writing was used in the Islamic Culture. It grew rapidly, and became a very popular part of the Islamic Culture. Calligraphy is still used at events like weddings to this very day. One of the biggest Islamic achievements was Islamic Architecture. For

Development of Art Throughout History

1758 words - 7 pages , script also represents power. Arabic calligraphy is a primary form of art for Islamic visual expression and creativity. Throughout the vast geography of the Islamic world, Arabic calligraphy is a symbol representing unity, beauty, and power. The aesthetic principles of Arabic calligraphy are a reflection of the cultural values of the Muslim world. A thorough investigation into the aesthetic differences between Arabic and non-Arabic calligraphy

Islamic Mosques

1049 words - 4 pages -i Qabus Monument is another example of breath taking architecture. Its incredible dimensions give way an awe-inspiring experience. The Monument was built Ziyarid prince Qabus. It was built before he died and uses distinct characteristics of Islamic architecture; such are the incorporation of calligraphy in the brick walls. A feature that sets this building aside from what we have previously seen in Islamic art is the Its Historical influence

Response to Chinese Calligraphy

521 words - 2 pages You would never imagine that the beautiful Chinese Calligraphy used and created by the Chinese is a principle of writing. It is actually a non-phonetic alphabet made of twenty-six letters and sounds that are used as a traditional form of art and a way of knowing for these people. However, these letters actually are meanings of adjectives and/or verbs that make up 3200 characters of this skillful art. During Wednesday's co-curricular event, a

Ottoman Architecture

1023 words - 4 pages ) (Istanbul Stay, n.d.). The walls of the mosque are decorated with the verses of Quraan in Turkish art of calligraphy. The Suleymaniye Mosque was not constructed praying only, it contains schools, shops, hospital, mausoleum, and a Turkish bath. To sum up, Suleymaniye Mosque is one of the enormous buildings of the ottoman empire that show the power and accomplishments of Sultan Suleiman. Islamic Ottoman architecture still influence modern

Modernism in Pakistan

749 words - 3 pages struggle of a national identity clearly suffered to develop. East Pakistan was home to a large rural population who was on the periphery of industrial change and continued to respond to folk art, classical realism, Islamic design elements and calligraphy unlike their urban counterparts. Although in the beginning the response against Western influence was strong, there was an interesting return to a Western influence but through the realm of

Symbolism in Islam

1248 words - 5 pages are not recognized within the faith, and instead, artistic representations of Islam, such as calligraphy and the use of geometric shapes in architecture, distinctively characterize the Muslim identity. The Communication Channels of Muslims The Islamic culture focuses on three major channels to transmit messages both internally within the community and externally throughout the world. The first transmission channel in the faith is spoken or oral

The Cultural Context Of Rebellious Silence and Home Décor

842 words - 3 pages Rebellious Silence is a photograph by Shirin Neshat, who is also the subject. In the work, Shirin Neshat's face is covered by Islamic calligraphy and is divided (left to right) by a rifle (assumedly but not necessarily held by herself). The calligraphy covers the parts of a woman's face that one must hide in Iran's theological state. The photograph is black and white, adding to the already serious tone of the work.The first impression received

Similar Essays

Painting And Calligraphy Are Strengthening In The Discovery Of Redefining Chinese Art. Two Defining Styles That Portray Dynastic Views

892 words - 4 pages Paintings and calligraphy manifest the many characteristics of Chinese art. Chinese pictorial representations of the surrounding world go deeper than just a simple picture. This can also be seen in calligraphy. To some it may seem as simple as writing Chinese characters on paper, yet both are known constructive art. Paintings are portrayed both stylistically and thematically while a calligrapher creates rhythm and strength with the tip of the

Art Museum Collection Classical Greece Roman Civilization Islamic Civilization Early Chinese Civilization Gothic And Late Middle Ages The Baroque Age

1972 words - 8 pages construct such art forms is emulating Allah. Since art was restricted by the Quran, Arabic calligraphy and arabesque became commonly used as an artistic outlet. These art techniques are in keeping with the Quran and the beliefs of the Muslim people; therefore abounded in the culture of Islam. The Quran is the foundation of the Islamic culture and even with advancements of the world and of Muslims, the holy book of Islam will still impact all views and

Arabic Calligraphy Essay

1679 words - 7 pages creation of ornamental writings. 2. Calligraphic Arts in the Islamic World Calligraphy is an art of elaborated writing and therefore, it is widely linked to scripts and language (Widany, p.3). The development of the Arabic language started before the arrival of Islam, but Arabic calligraphy is a phenomenon that was conceived in the time of the first great empires. As an art with different styles and uses, the Arabic language and subsequently its

La County Museum Of Art Essay

1369 words - 5 pages . It was described as the most important of all elements in Islamic art. This art was considered dignified, due to its association with the Muslims Holy Book Koran, temple and palace inscriptions, and its use in writing Arabic scripts. This art of beautiful writing was extended to other arts like, pottery, metalwork, stone, and glass, among others. Fig I: Tile Fig II: Calligraphy (Photos retrieved from