In the cities of Cairo, Aleppo, and Damascus, architecture and art flourished under the patronage of Mamluk rulers (1250 – 1517) made rich by trade. Elaborate lamps, pulpits, and stands holding Qur’an manuscripts were present in mosques and tombs. Many ornate objects made from brass heavily inlaid with silver and copper, were used at court.
Early Islamic art is best encapsulated from the 8th to 10th centuries. That span of time was rife with great political shifts and the gradual creation of an artistic tradition unique to Islamic communities. When the Muslim state conquered the culturally sophisticated regions of land that belonged to the Byzantine and Sasanian empires in the 7th century, it absorbed the culture in those regions as well, helped shape and develop Islamic art.
Ink defines forms and articulates detail on nearly all Islamic art that takes place on paper. The Qur’an and the Hadith directly connect ink with Creation as Islamic tradition says that first thing God created was the pen. The Hadith refers to sayings attributed to Muhammad and the Qur’an is the collection of Islamic scriptures. In Islamic culture, ink is also associated with morality and intellect, and it is considered a sacred practice to copy scripture from the Qur’an in ink.
We have come a long way and made it to the regions of Spain and Northwestern Africa! You can find Islamic influences across the globe! The item we are given to examine is a page of the Qur’an featuring Maghrib script, a decorative calligraphy, named for the area of Northwestern Africa and Spain known as Maghrib.
Islam is a major world religion that dates back to the 7th century B.C.E. Muslim tradition believes that the Prophet Muhammad was God’s messenger and was the final prophet in the lineage of Abrahamic religions. Muslims believe that God’s will was verbally revealed to Muhammad through the angel Gabriel. These verbal revelations are preserved as written word within the pages of the Qur’an, the book of Islam.
Islam is one of the most practiced religions in the world. If you practice Islam, your day starts with a call to prayer. Let the new exhibition Ink, Silk, and, Gold: Islamic Treasures from the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston call you to the Cummer Museum.
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