Simorgh Dreaming

This piece was inspired from two directions; one was my desire to close my artwork for the course in the same way I opened it, namely with an Australian Aboriginal dot painting, and the other was to incorporate themes from “The Conference of the Birds” into a piece of artwork.

The design of this piece consists of thirty rows of dots representing the thirty birds that complete the journey in the poem.  The serpentine path contains seven valleys and six peaks, representative of the seven valleys that the birds must cross as a part of their quest to find the Simorgh.

Rather than include all the colors throughout the design, I made the conscious choice to only use green in the very center.  Green is the color of Islam, and one of the themes of “The Conference of the Birds” is the existence of a path to communion with God, which can be seen to be Islam in some contexts.  By keeping a narrow green path in the middle, the piece signifies Islam as a path to be followed to reach a state of communion with God.

I decided to work only in rich blues and greens for this piece as opposed to the reds, oranges and browns of my previous dot painting both as a contrast to that piece but also to show a richness of color; blues and greens are lively and full of life, whereas browns and reds can feel harsh and barren.

As explained in my calligraphy project, dot painting is a relevant medium for Islam because it can look random under a microscope but only achieves meaning and significance when viewed from a macro scale.  In addition, the nuances of color can be lost depending on the angle.  As in Islam, the piece must be viewed from many angles on many scales to be properly understood.

 

Here are some shots of the piece in progress!

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