Haji Noor Deen: Chinese master of Arabic calligraphy

August 17, 2011 - By Afra Naushad for Arab News

Most of the pieces of his calligraphic work are an artistic exaltation celebrating the glory of God with the verses of the Holy Qur’an. There is an almost royal rendition in his presentation of visual imagery conforming to both literal and figurative senses with the beautiful usage of artistic complexities and geometric patterns by way of circles, flowers, vases, fruits, triangles, fans, scepters, swords, minarets, and rhombuses.
Deen’s art is the unique revival of the splendor of Islamic artistry and the wondrous role it has played in the expression and preservation of the word of the Qur’an by recipients of the Islamic message.

For her first solo show in Saudi Arabia, photographer Jowhara AlSaud presents work from her series ‘Out of Line’, a body of work that began as an exploration of censorship and its effects on visual communication.

Photographs of intimate social images of family and friends, manually manipulated through fastidious etchings on negative, reveal figures depleted of all facial features. Yet, in spite of the absence of identifiable features, the images appear intimate and inviting, even charming and carefree, while still demonstrating the complex cultural constraints that govern the depiction of people in Saudi Arabia.

The result is a succession of collective family portraits of the viewer at large, achieved through a process of identification and appropriation. So much is revealed by what is concealed.