Saturday, January 29, 2011

Theme # 2 - Window

'Window' immediately brought to my mind the one in the Agra tower where the emperor Shah Jahan spent his last days..

History says that Shah Jahan was over whelmed with grief when his wife Mumtaz died and he decided to build a memorial for her - a memorial that would stand the test of time in its grandeur.. Unfortunately, soon after the Taj Mahal's completion, Shah Jahan was deposed by his son Aurangazeb and put under house arrest at the nearby Agra Fort. His only consolation was that he could see the Taj from the window in his room. Shah Jahan died in 1666 in captivity and was buried in the Taj near his beloved Mumtaz.

I have tried to depict the window and its view of the Taj in this picture..

The picture of the Taj was taken during my visit to Agra. The picture of the window was taken from photoshelter and write up from wikipedia.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

100 Themes Challenge - Digital Whisper

Recently, Digital Whisper has come up with a brilliant idea of the 100 Themes Challenge.. My first entry for the challenge is posted here:

Challenge No 49 - STRIPES

This picture done on photoshop has been inspired by a form of art from India called the Kolam or Rangoli. Drawing a kolam is an everyday tradition in the southern parts of India.

Kolam (kõlaṁ) is a form of sandpainting that is drawn using rice powder by female members of the family in front of their home. It is widely practised by the people of Southern India. The patterns can be geometric and mathematical line drawings around a matrix of dots or free form art work and closed shapes.

Kolams are thought to bestow prosperity to homes. Every morning in Southern India, millions of women draw kolams on the ground with white rice powder. Through the day, the drawings get walked on, rained out, or blown around in the wind; new ones are made the next day. Every morning before sunrise, the floor is cleaned with water, the universal purifier, and the kolams are generally drawn while the surface is still damp.(Quoted from

A typical scene of drawing kolams looks like this:


Tuesday, January 4, 2011

The beauty of Arabic Calligraphy

Among all the languages in the world, none celebrate the form of the written alphabet like the arabic language. In this language, alphabets are like dancers, dancing to the tune of the calligraphers pen.

Traditional arabic calligraphy can be flowing like the deewani font, or be stiff and straight like the kufi font, or it can take the contemporary avatar from the brush of the artist. There are innumerable fonts in arabic, each a visual treat if you are into typography.

Sharjah Calligraphy Institute hosts the 'Calligraphy Biennial' where calligraphy artists from all over the world display their work. This unique event has influenced us to try some typography in our work.

Here are a few of our paintings celebrating the beauty of arabic calligraphy.

The orange colored flowing style is called the Deewani Jalil while the golden font - sharp and straight is called the Kufi style of calligraphy.

Our experiments in the contemporary styles: