About Me

I am a self-professed art lover. I had been looking and appreciating art ever since I can remember. When I was a child I would beg my parents to buy me books, not for me to read, but to see all the colourful illustrations and pictures within. Sometimes the materials I chose are questionable – would a seven-year-old child read a scientific magazine full of  technical matters?  The truth is, the magazine had pictures of an Ancient Egyptian carving of a pharaoh offering wine to Thoth, Deity of Knowledge and one illustration depicting world architectures. I would then drool on the picture every day looking at the details, even if the picture itself is no larger than a hand palm.

I am into many kinds of visual art from many cultures – from the ancient carvings of Egypt, the majestic statues of Ancient Greek and Rome, the glittering mosaics of Byzantine, and the patterns of Islamic tiles.

The latter is what this blog is all about. In the recent years I obsessed on the repeating tessellations of the tiles that adorn Islamic, religious or secular, buildings. From the medieval Andalusian palaces of Alhambra, the multiple mosques of Cairo to the imposing Casbah of Morocco. The decoration does not end there – swirling Arabesque designs embellish the walls of the buildings, side by side with the tilings and tessellations, and carvings or calligraphy.

I myself of all these years tried to learn this fascinating form of art. How does it get so uniform, repeating in a way so simple and yet, so complicated and in turn creates a magnificent form.

The blog is a tribute to it – The appreciation of  these beautiful creation of art. I will be posting observations, the methods of creating and my own projects to share with you.

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57 responses to “About Me

  1. amine

    Hey,

    Love your enthusiasm! From which country are you if one might ask?

    • Hello there amine! 🙂

      Sorry for the late reply, but thank you so much for the comment! I live in Brunei now, a small country in South East Asia.

  2. Azim

    Your blog is a feast for the eyes so beautiful and informative But at the same time you keep the focus on the VISUALS.

    Like you books with pictures were my food. And even now I prefer books with illustrations more than photos.
    How has your project re the cover of the Quoran been going. Such a monumental task. ??

    best wishes

    Aine

    ps You might consider enabling the “Followers” widget on Blogspot
    oh oh …. I see this is WordPress – do they have a similar widget . I am sure you would have a very numerous and appreciative audience.

    • Hello Aine,

      Thank you so much for the compliments, it means a lot! I appreciate it. I have just finished the project (and submitted it last Wednesday) so I will be posting it sooner or later 🙂 Keep on reading the blog! 😀

      Azim

      ps – I added a feed to the blog so feel free to follow at http://feeds.feedburner.com/ StarsInSymmetry…not much like Blogspot’s but I guess its better than nothing 🙂

  3. rhett beavers

    You’ve developed a wonderful site – if you don’t mind, I’d like to use some of your images for a class in the history/development of landscapes for the Landscape Architecture Program at UCLA Extension in Los Angeles, CA, USA… may I have your approval? thank you in advance…

    I note you live in Brunei – I had the chance to visit there while on the island of Borneo – what a great country and what great, friendly people I met there… lucky you…

    thanks

    • Hello,

      Thank you for the comment. Most of the images are released to public domain so feel free to use them as you wish, you don’t have to ask for my permission.

      And thanks for the compliments about Brunei. Yes, I do feel lucky to live here all my life! And you are more than welcome to come again to Brunei.

      Kind Regards,
      Azim

  4. Hello
    My name is Yama Azizi. I am an Afghan born Artist. I came across your blog tonight, and it is truly an honor to have found it. This blog is going to change my life forever. I am always in search of examples and an in depth explanation of Islamic culture and art. I would like like u to visit my website and give me an idea of where I stand in this movement. Many thanks in Advance. You can also see some of my work in this vedio http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SAtgPMYEMQg

    • Hi Yama Azizi,
      I am pleased to know that that my small blog is some help to people, and thank you for the compliments. I am truly humbled by your honour.
      I have visited your site and watched your youtube video, and I have to say I am very, very impressed by your detailed, meticulous portfolio! I am no expert in art though, I am nothing more than an appreciator of it. Though I would give you an idea here or there, but again, it is not in my field to do as such.

      Regards,
      Azim

      • Dear Azim, Thanks for your kind reply. I also Am not a professional in this field, but my passion grow to something extra ordinary after years of practice. And i finally found a break through in world or Islamic design and pattern making. Now i feel as tho i have a responsibility to get my work out there for the world to see just like us who grow up in the middle of such culture, sounded by the beauties of those artist who left for us to fall in love with. I find u more than just an appreciator, we in a way serve the same purpose.

        God bless your soul.
        Yama

      • Hi Yama,
        I can clearly see your talent for Islamic design, and honestly it looks very beautiful – Islamic in some sort of modern twist to it, if I may give my view on it. My interest on Islamic art and architecture was since I was a child, but I got more and more interested.
        I very much agree for what you have said. I think the art of the Islamic world is unappreciated, very much so to the youths of our culture who just pretty much take things for granted. My purpose here is pretty much to spark interest on the topic, to reintroduce in a small scale the beauty of Islamic aesthetics.

        Kind Regards,
        Azim

  5. gene turangan

    Hi,I just want to share my creation re.stars in symmetry at

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/turangan/

    Enjoy.

    • Hello,

      Thanks for sharing! I have seen your work before, you’re the manufacturer of Zilij tiles in Indonesia right? I ‘liked’ your page on facebook. I am very eager to see more of your creations.

      Kind Regards,
      Azim

  6. Pam Azab

    Hello,
    Your blog is great. I’m doing my MA in Islamic art & architecture, if you could help me I’d be very thankful. I am searching for Byzantine & Roman mosaic patterns that influenced or are similar to the designs on the soffits of the arches of Ibn Tulun mosque in Cairo, I need sources. Doris Behrens-Abouseif mentions a Byzantine influence in her book, but there is no mention of a source.
    Regards,
    Pam

    • Hi Pam,

      Thanks for your comment, I really appreciate it! I will try my best to help you. I will get back to you once I have something about the topic.

      Kind Regards,
      Azim

      • Hi Pam,

        Here’s what I got. I guess it’s not much of a source, but hopefully you can make some use of these.

        This is the picture of the Ibn Tulun tocco decorations on the soffits of the arcades of the Mosque of Ibn Tulun –

        And this is what I think influenced the decorations –

        As you can see the decorations in the mosque only used the abstract designs, not the figural art. The influences mostly came from Byzantine. hope this help a bit!

        Kind Regards,
        Azim

  7. Pam Azab

    Hi Azim,
    Thanks for your help, those pics are helpful. 🙂

    Regards,
    Pam

    • Hi Pam,

      Glad they are at least some help of you 😀 should you need any help, please don’t hesitate to contact me again!

      Kind Regards,
      Azim

  8. faiza

    it was nice knowing abt u specially ur love for art im also an amature artist now going to participate in a competition in pnca in the holy month of ramadan.
    im always keen to know about the upcoming artists lyk u

    • Hi faiza,

      Thank you for your comment! I wish you luck about the competition you are going to join, though I would like to know more about it.

      Kind Regards,
      Azim

  9. ahmedamiruddin

    Salamu Alaikum Azim,

    Great blog, with very useful information. Please post more information on the Nabatean roots of Kufic script, with more examples.

    • Alaikum Salam,

      Thanks for the comment! I will try to study your requested topic, so expect it to be posted in a few weeks or so 🙂 Thank you and keep on reading.

  10. Pam Azab

    Happy Eid Azim

  11. safoora Hussain

    Salaam alaikum Azim,
    Wonderful blog and am so pleased to find one that just feeds my obsession. I love art too, specially Islamic Art and Arabesques, mosaics and mashrabiyas excite me no end.
    Great work!
    Safoora

    • W Alaikum Salam Safoora,
      Thank you for the compliments, and I am very glad to know there is someone out there who is just as obsessed with Islamic art and architecture as I am….Keep on reading!

  12. Alan Wynne

    Hi, 1st of all I must compliment you on your site it has been really interesting & informative, well done. My name is Alan & im based in the UK. I am one year into a two year wall & floor tiling course here in the UK. I have always had an interest in art although I would not class myself as an artist. I have had an interest in mosaic both traditional & contemporary & also fine Zilij tiling with its geometrical forms quite fasinating. I would love to try out some of the Zilij patterns for myself & have search high & low on the internet looking for the tiles. Could you tell me if you know were I could purchase the shaped tiles pre cut so I could try to create a piece of Zilij work myself. Thank you for your time & I hope to hear back from you soon. Keep up the good work with your site.
    Regards Alan W

    • Hello Alan,

      First of all, Sorry for the late reply. Thank you for your comment, it means a lot! I was looking for a website seeing loose Zillij tiles and I have found one, I think it could help you – http://www.zellige-tiles.com/ .If I may suggest, you can also try to cut common ceramic tiles for yourself with original zillij tile pattern as your reference. Good luck!

      Kind Regards,
      Azim

  13. Azim I think its rare that brunei people love to blog obsessed about Art… How can I connect with you on twitter or facebook?

    • LOL not sure about the general population here, but I think mostly focused on photography, or shopping, or fashion…
      should you want to connect with Facebook you can ‘like’ this blog’s page.

      Thanks for the compliments as well! 😀

  14. And i think this is sooo cool. Keep up with this good effort!

  15. Jazayeri

    Hi ,,
    Thank u for all info,, would u like to publish some of your photos in our recent book by publishing ur name?
    If yes, would u plz send me high quality photos?

    Looking to hear from u soon, by my email
    Seyd

  16. well …we had found a part of the lost mughal glass arts in lebanon .now a lot can see 5 of amazing islamic arts at

    http://www.youtube.com/user/badran106?feature=mhee

  17. Sana

    Salams! Your blog is just amazing, ans so genuine. Reading about you reminds me a lot about myself. Bless you!

  18. Sana

    Your projects page is great! gives me some great ideas to do with my kids. Thanks so much for sharing all your wonderful ideas and thoughts!

    • Thank you for your feedback! It is just some simple, easy projects so I am glad that it gave you ideas to do with your kids. I will do lots more so please check back often!

  19. dear …
    I am an Islamic calligrapher & painter too.
    I can drew every modern or classic Islamic calligraphy plan.
    you can see some of my pictures to this address :
    http://www.afshariart.com
    I am ready to cooperation to your needs.
    best regards
    afshari

    • Salam,
      I have visited your website and your artwork are a great example of both modern and traditional Islamic calligraphy. I will feature you very soon, and thanks for leading me to your website and your artwork!
      Regards,
      Azim

  20. G.Sarwar Khero

    Good work.By the way has been reproduced by you.If yes pl.mail me(Hadith tile work in Lahore mosque)

  21. Hi Azim,

    I am an illustrator and am currently working on an illustration for an american university magazine which is about some Iranian students who studied at the university. I was looking for some eastern style patterns to use in my illustration and came across your lovely blog!
    I wondered if you would allow me to use one or two of the patterns you created in my illustration? they would only be a very small part of the picture….If you would like to see how i use patterns and textures in my work please do visit my website sarahhanson.co.uk
    Look forward to hearing back from you –
    Sarah

    P.S keep up the good work!

    • Hi Sarah,

      Thank you for visiting my blog, and thank you for the compliment! It’s not that much of a blog, really 🙂
      I have quite a lot of Islamic patterns both in my blog and my computer, so feel free to use them. If you need more I can always send you some samples.
      Have a good day and all the best for the illustration, I am looking forward to it!

      Azim

  22. chandni

    what is your full name?

  23. Came across your site by accident. LOVE THIS!! I’m a big fan of Islamic art and architecture, and this is a great way for me to learn more. Thanks for sharing 🙂

  24. This is a wounderful site – Thank you for sharing. I really love the pale blue design at the outside edges of the blog is there a name for it?

  25. GREAT efforts and nice blog too.Hope we can be in touch.And hoping to visit my blog too.

  26. shehnila

    i got article from ur site bt i dnt have refrnce of this , as m doing my thesis n i have to have rfrnce , may u help me egarding this , kindly send me rfrnce

  27. Gro

    Thank you so much for your wonderful site! I stumbled upon it by accident as I was roaming the internet for articles and images on Islamic art, especially tiles. I am an artist and I am getting fascinated by the subtle power of geometries, and exploring your site proved a very worthwhile introduction.

  28. Layla Al Qatta

    Salam Azim,

    your attitude and passion towards art is very interesting. I work in Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque, and I read your articles and they are very useful. Thank you so much for creating this blog, and I hope that your passion will inspire this generation to build creative Islamic architecture 🙂

    Regards,
    Layla Ahmed

    • Salam Layla,

      Sorry for the very late reply and thanks for your comment! I have always been in love in Islamic art and architecture, but only recently I have taken serious interest in it. It will be a great achievement if anyone would be inspired with my humble blog. I am hoping to be able to visit Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque someday.I have seen lots of great photos of the mosque. You are lucky to work in such a grand place!

      Kind Regards,
      Azim

  29. didi sufhidin

    assalamualaikum azim…im interested in your design…btw kita ada design air muleh??

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