Muslim Achievements: Calligraphy
Calligraphy is the art of writing letters and word with decorative strokes. It is a type of visual art. (buffaloah) It was used to decorate buildings, swords or armor. Most of the written decorations were verses from the Qur’an. Early Muslims looked at the artistry of calligraphy as a religious expression. It was a primary form of art for Islamic visual expression and creativity. Arabic calligraphy is a symbol of representing unity, beauty, and power. Calligraphers made manuscripts of epic and lyric poetry and also history and geography.
The practice of calligraphy was a holy task and it required long and arduous training. The scribe must be a person of exceptional spiritual refinement. The esthetic achievement of Arabic calligraphy lies with itself and also the perfect union with the system of Islamic ornamentation called arabesque. Arabic calligraphy is a symbol that represents power and beauty. In the abstract of beauty of the lines, energy flows in between the letters and words. All of the parts are integrated into a whole. These parts include positive spacing, negative spacing, and the flow of energy that weaves together the calligraphers rendering.
A teacher of Islamic calligraphy would train a student on how to prepare and use a multitude of materials and tools. The items used were made of precious materials and collected by calligraphers and rulers alike. Before a calligrapher writes the first letter, the reed nib must be cut, ink mixed, paper prepared, and the writing area arranged. The pen used in calligraphy is called a kalem and it is made of a reed that grows around watercourses. A seasoned reed is cut by first placing it on a makta. The tip is cut with a razor-sharp penknife at an angle to reveal an oval shaped opening. It is shaped to form a flat tongue called kalem dili. The tongue is split parallel to the pen. The opening serves as a reservoir for the ink. The tip of the tongue is cut at an oblique angle....
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