Bible figures honored in Islamic Art
May a Muslim artist depict Muhammad? The image included in "Bible Figures in Islamic Art" shows that this is indeed possible. The prophet wears a veil so that his visage is not visible. Surprisingly Muhammad is featured in this unique full color booklet together with Jesus and his mother Mary!
The front cover shows Adam and his wife expelled from paradise. The snake, responsible for letting the devil into the Garden of Eden, is about to lose its legs, doomed to slide on his belly. In the final pages the paradise gardens are shown, to which humankind may yet aspire.
Illustrations also refer to other stories, well known from the Bible; Jonah and the big fish; David playing the harp. Pictures that are familiar, yet strangely different; Jesus on horseback raising Lazarus from the dead; King Solomon surrounded by the animals he understands.
Did these Muslim artists read the Bible? No! They simple portrayed the figures they knew since childhood from the Qur’an.
The unknown artists who made these fascination pictures worked in the 16th and 17th century, in the great empires of Persia and Mogul India.
Five museums, including the Arthur M Sackler Gallery, Topkapi Palace Istanbul, and Khalili Family Trust cooperated by providing the photographs reproduced in this very affordable booklet.
It was compiled by Dr. Marlies ter Borg, philosopher and bridge builder from Holland. For the full texts of the stories illustrated, see her earlier book, Sharing Mary, Bible and Qur'an Side by Side.
For information on the author see www.amazon.com/Marlies-ter-Borg/e/B006KS9UG6
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