Islamic Calligraphy

CALLIGRAPHY, or the formulating of words into unique forms, is considered the highest art form in Islam, for several reasons.
For one, the Qur'aan was revealed in Arabic and for that reason, Arabic calligraphy has a spiritual meaning for Muslims. Also, using words as artistry avoided the usage of images of animate objects, prohibited in Islam.

CALLIGRAPHY adorns architecture, decorative arts, coins, jewellery, textiles, weapons, tools, paintings, and manuscripts.
The initial task of the calligrapher, and the one that remained the most important, was copying the Qur'aan.
From there, it grew as it was used to decorate almost any surface. Religious architecture almost always featured inscriptions in Arabic calligraphy, usually verses from the Qur'aan.

THE ISLAMIC emphasis on learning and knowledge, as well as prolific book production, led to a much more literate population than in medieval Europe.
But even those who could not read could still appreciate its artistic beauty, without knowing what it said.
It would be impossible to appreciate Arabic calligraphy without understanding what it represents to Muslims. It is not fancy lettering meant to merely be read but is used as the ultimate expression of God’s words and therefore meant to be felt.
Calligraphy was a way to mark a building as distinctly Islamic as well as pay tribute to God. Adding to the depth is the fact that artists found this as the means for their creative expression.
Even more amazing is their ability to compose forms such as stars entirely of words.

CALLIGRAPHY expresses the glory of God’s words as revealed in the Quraan.

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