The display of traditional calligraphy at the Lok Mela on Wednesday turned out to be the showstopper of the event.
Apart from other attractions at the festival, the display depicting traditional calligraphy greatly fascinated the visitors and has become one of the major features of the 10-day event.
Calligraphy stalls present the works of an established calligraphist Muhammad Azeem Iqbal, who has been into the Islamic art and calligraphy for the last 25 years.
He has introduced a unique identity in his art. Instead of traditional calligraphy, he has replicated the classical styles of calligraphy from the early days of Islam by using similar materials and resources of that era.
Iqbal has added a new dimension which may be called the portrayal of Islamic history and evolution of Quranic calligraphy.
Most of his work centres on the chronological evolution of calligraphy in Islamic art. His work symbolises the cultural identity of the entire Islamic world.
Iqbal has made a collage of bones, wood, leather, deerskin, gold and silver leaves in his art.
He also pioneered the tradition of using “Aab-e-zam zam” to dilute the colours that are used to write the holy verses of the Quran. Recently, he has created a series of Quranic calligraphy to promote the message of peace and humanity through art.
Lok Virsa’s Executive Director, Khalid Javaid said, “Pakistan has a rich history of beautiful calligraphic traditions, which needs to be projected.”
He said that calligraphy - the art which combines visual imagery and the written word - is perhaps at its most brilliant in Islamic art.
Published in The Express Tribune, April 18th, 2013.
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