The Vault: Tehreem Pasha

Published: May 24, 2018

Tehreem always had a creative side to her, from making drawings and doodling as a child, to creating awe-inspiring works of art with Tehzip and finding her true calling as an artist! She shares with us some of her best works and talks about how Artteefied came to be

How and when did you become interested in art?

Growing up, my mere interest in traditional arts evolved into a passion. Till this day, my mother reminds me of the little drawings and doodles I used to make when I was 3-4 years old; which my father used to keep with him during his travels. When I got older, it just made sense. I knew what my calling was.

Share a memorable story with us about a design you’ve made?

A piece I’ve done which is close to my heart is a Tehzip; with Whirling Dervishes and a Rumi quote in the centre. This particular one is memorable because I remember it like it was yesterday – the moment I fell in love with Tehzip/Islamic illumination, the intricacy, the delicacy, the sheer beauty in the history of Islamic art. When I got hold of myself after the days and nights spent on it, there was only one person that encouraged me to learn and master this form; it was my history professor in university.

Is there any design that you are emotionally attached to and why?

Yes, the Tehzip one with Whirling Dervishes and a Rumi quote in the centre. As I mentioned the story of how I fell in love with Tehzip, this was the end result. My first ever Tehzip work and it was everything that I had hoped for it to be, honestly I surprised myself with what I can do. I’ve always felt a special connection with that piece due to it being my first ever large scale work and also because the one person that encouraged me to create it had passed away; and couldn’t see me showcase it for the world to see. I just recently sold it at an exhibition.

What inspires you and how do you conceive your designs?

Almost everything inspires me, be it tangible or not. The most influential element  if I had to pick one would be nature. My thought process and my colour palettes very much revolve around nature. The design patterns, especially the geometry that nature displays day and night, I don’t think there’s a bigger pool of inspiration anywhere else.

Which form of art would you say is your favourite?

I’d have to say Tehzip, also known as illumination. Basically the term ‘illumination’ is widely used to describe the art of decorating manuscripts through the application of gold and/or silver. Tehzip is the Turkish term for it.

Is there anything on your radar that you wish to make in the future?

I’m currently expanding my knowledge and my practice with a more experimental take on traditional and gothic script styles, but I’d love to stay true to my passion and do large scale murals mixing Tehzip and Islamic calligraphy.

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