Sunday, December 14, 2008

Pre-Kufi Period (Shukor Yahya 0.1)

This decorated Kufi was designed by Firdaus Mahadi, signified his own name.

Firdaus Mahadi is a master in Thuluth and Naskh writing and design. He is from Masjid Tanah Melaka, Malaysia. Currently, he is in a familiarization process about the technique and tricks of designing Kufi. He made a comment and said that the Kufi I have painted is called Kufi Murabba'. Perhaps it is a translation to Kufi Square in Arabic. 

During Pre-Kufi of Shukor Yahya's life, he had also indulged himself in what Firdaus currently is doing . 

This painting is entitled kalimah Shahadah (2003),
is an example of Shukor Yahya's Thuluth writing.
It is a collection of Surau Islamiah at PKNS Flats, Section 17, Petaling Jaya, Malaysia.

This kalimah means,
 "None has the right to be worshipped but Allah, and Muhammad S.A.W. is the messenger of Allah".

Emulsion on canvas, measures 76 cm X 76 cm. Priced USD 100 K.

When Shukor Yahya was working in advertising agencies he was frequently tasked to design Eid-il-Fithri greeting cards or write some advertising headlines in Jawi for many clients. He often accomplished the tasks to his clients satisfaction. In fact he is the only one who had the expertise in the agency. Otherwise the task had to be out-sourced. He does not really learn the technique of the writing, except during his primary school days when he started learning to spell and write both in Roman and Jawi.
In 2004 he took part in a first Jawi and Chinese calligraphic competition organized by Islamic Arts Museum, Malaysia by submitting three works. The judges did not give him the first, second or third awards but instead he was the winner of three consolation prices. Perhaps due to his unusual treatment in his paintings which broke out of the norm.

This book can be purchased from Islamic Arts Museum Malaysia or The British Museum.

In 2004 one of his work was chosen to be included in a coffee table book entitled Mightier Than a Sword, jointly published by Islamic Arts Museum of Malaysia and the British Museum. The work was placed last (page 221) in the book, which indicated the latest contemporary development in the Arabic script writing in the world, from the past to present.

Dr. Heba Nayel Barakat's (2004), said, "Composed in a plenitude of colors, the Malaysian artist Shukor Yahya created a wonderful and serene composition of phrase from the Islamic tradition; those who seek The Might, it's God that totally encompasses the Might. The artist successfuly created out of sporadic droplets an outstanding composed space, philosophically leading the mind to focus on the origin of everything, in the spirit of Monotheism approach. 

The calligraphy is rendered in a lighter pigment in a three dimensional manner making the word easy to read and understand hence, the artist has combined beauty, philosophy and meaning. Shukor Yahya was a participant of Manifestasi Perdana Seni Khat, Kuala Lumpur, an annual calligraphy competition of Malaysia and was recognized for his innovation and creativity.  

The lesson he learnt from it was not to follow the norm to get noticed. After all he felt tuluth writing is somewhat cliche to him and would only placed him as a me-too artist, albeit the way-out treatments he had tried.

At this juncture he started Square Kufi which he had been toying around with his computer for quite sometimes.

This painting is Shukor Yahya's personal collection since 2003. Painted with emulsion on canvas, measures 90 cm X 60 cm. 
He would only willing to be parted from it for USD 100 K.

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