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Islamic Architecture
 
Calligraphy in historic Islamic architecture
I would invite opinions on the 'importance of calligraphy on ancient and historic Islamic architecture'. I have always been spellbound by the art of 'Arabic Calligraphy', and that was the reason why I choose to be a professional calligrapher in the Arabic and Urdu scripts here in Baroda, India. Although this art is almost dead in this part of the world. (One of my my works is Illustrated here on the right)
Haseeb Siddique.
www.haseebsiddique.8k.com
Haseeb Siddique Shaikh
Responses
 
Calligraphy in historic Islamic architecture
Well, Haseeb, I am happy to know your field of interest as well mastered craft. I appreciate and shall come back to you with nice application as well historic contextual values.
Dushyant Nathwani
Calligraphy in historic Islamic architecture
Some of my favorite applications of calligraphy on buildings is in the various Sufi traditions and found in early Ottoman buildings, where large letters dwarf the architectural elements.

For example:

Old Mosque of Edirne.

Ozgur Basak Alkan
Calligraphy in historic Islamic architecture
The power/force/scale/flow and, of course, the rhythm of trancendence is visible in the above example. Sufi school of thought mastered the art of spoken word in expression. Yes, it is beyond architecture.
Dushyant Nathwani
Calligraphy in historic Islamic architecture
You might want to visit the website of Mamoun Sakkal (http://www.sakkal.com/) and contact him directly since he works directly in this area and is receieving recognition for it.
Daniel Owen
Calligraphy in historic Islamic architecture
Hi Haseeb,

I think that caligraphic inscriptions on historic structures are not just about ornamentation or beauty. While they certainly provide grace and beauty to the overall composition, I am more excited by the content and relevance of such inscriptions. Precise historical facts like dates, and other philosophical thoughts expressed in these inscriptions certainly enrich one's knowledge and overall thought process. Since my background is in architectural conservation, hope you dont find my response as a digression from your intended direction of discussion.
Shubhru Gupta
Calligraphy in historic Islamic architecture
Thanks Mr. Daniel Owen on suggesting the website http://www.sakkal.com and I have been a regular visitor to 'Sakkal' website. I must say its a great website to visit for the lovers of the Calligraphy Art in Arabic.

Also Mr. Shubhru Gupta thanks for enlighting on the Conservation, you definately did not divert from my basic point of Discussion, Keep on adding to the Topic please. Here is one more of my Calligraphy effort.
Haseeb Siddique Shaikh
Calligraphy in historic Islamic architecture
Ahem... I am Ms. Shubhru Gupta, but glad to be of help anyway.
Shubhru Gupta
Calligraphy in historic Islamic architecture
This topic is central to the development and evolution of Islamic calligraphy and architecture.Without calligraphy, Islamic architecture would be reduced to masses and volumes. The two arts are dependent on each other. They are inseperale. Unfortunately this simple fac is ignored in today'a practice.Without calligraphy Islamic architecture has lost it's prime identity component. The two, however can meet again. We as architcts can bring the two arts together.There are very few promising modern examples to bring back calligrahy into architecture. We just need better education, appreciation, and better working and practice environments in The Arab and Muslim World.
Hani Alqahtani
Calligraphy in historic Islamic architecture
May I also recommend:

http://www.fenoon.com/fenoon/fenoon.html
John Lockerbie
Calligraphy in historic Islamic architecture
Many an architectural attempt utilized Arabic and Islamic calligraphy intertwined with the geometric forms as a substitute for the usage of human forms as statues and murals. This created a whole movement where calligraphy became a dominant and determining characteristic of Islamic architecture as is the case with the interior and exterior walls of the mosques of Andalusia. The usage of calligraphy carried on to being included in every aspect of design ranging from wall paint to pottery and exterior carvings on a massive scale.
As you mentioned, there has been a shift away from the usage of calligraphy in architecture and even modern islamic inspired structures refrain from its use. Even mosques are adopting a modern simplistic approach to calligraphic application in their architecture. I invite you to view the works of Reza Abedini, an example of a typographic artist taking on a more contemprary approach to calligraphy--one, might I add, which has yet to be utilized in space as an architectural undertaking.

Recommended resources:

Also, The Splendor of Islamic Calligraphy-Khatibi

http://www.rezaabedini.com/

http://atrissi.com/
Butheina Kadhem
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