Dome of the Rock / Al Aqsa Mosque

Dome of the Rock / Al Aqsa Mosque by Ayesha Gamiet (c) 2016

My most recent commission, completed last month. I loved exploring each intricate little pattern, interpreting the design into a miniature / illuminated painting. Very challenging at times, but definitely worth the effort. I loved combining my knowledge of manuscript illumination with my (limited) studies in miniature painting to create this illustration, and it has inspired me to learn more.

Close up of Dome of the Rock / Al Aqsa painting (c) Ayesha Gamiet 2016

The dome was created by gilding 22 carat gold leaf on the surface of the paper. You can view a clip of the gold on the dome catching the light here. The architectural patterns and foliage were painted using coloured gouache, often applied in layers to give the impression of patterns on a mosaic tile. The plants and flowers were intended to represent abundance, growth, life, and hope. I painted very stylised palm leaves and bougainvillea framing the edge of the illustration, as these plants are prevalent in the region. Plus, I think the organic shapes of foliage contrast well against the crystalline architectural patterns.

My client is Palestinian, unable to visit the Dome of the Rock for 23 years. He asked me to make this painting as a reminder of his homeland. It was an honour to be entrusted with such a task, and I hope this artwork brings some peace and joy to him and his family.

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This entry was posted in Gilding, Illustration, Islamic Architecture, Islamic Manuscript Illumination, Miniature painting, Pattern in Islamic art, commissions, fine art, painting. Bookmark the permalink.

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