Islamic geometry and plaster carving workshop at the University of Cambridge, Faculty of Education

Students' geometry drawing and plaster carving in progress. University of Cambridge, Faculty of Education. Islamic art workshop with Ayesha Gamiet.

Last week, I was back at Cambridge University to deliver my second Islamic art workshop for the year. I had a full day to work with the wonderful trainee art teachers, so I decided to go into a little more depth in teaching Islamic geometry. I also gave students the opportunity to try their hand at plaster carving – a skill I intend to include in my forthcoming summer workshops. ┬áIn the morning session, I delivered a short illustrated talk on Islamic design. We also discussed how Islamic art might be integrated into schemes of work in the art curriculum, and talked about cultural sensitivities that teachers might need to be aware of when teaching Muslim children.

Students explore 12-fold Islamic geometry, then experiment with creating their own patterns for plaster carving. University of Cambridge, Faculty of Education. Islamic art workshop with Ayesha Gamiet.

After a quick geometry “warm up”, (yes, it is possible to warm up for geometry!) we moved onto creating 12-fold patterns, where students used tracing paper overlays to experiment with their own personalised 12-fold designs. We also constructed a traditional 12-fold pattern from the Islamic world.

A student creates their own unique design for a plaster carving based upon their new knowledge of 12-fold geometry. University of Cambridge, Faculty of Education. Islamic art workshop with Ayesha Gamiet.

After lunch, students started work on the plaster carvings! They were given the opportunity to work from their own designs, developed in the morning session, or to work from the traditional 12-fold pattern that we constructed together.

Plaster carving works in progress. University of Cambridge, Faculty of Education. Islamic art workshop with Ayesha Gamiet.

Plaster carving works in progress. University of Cambridge, Faculty of Education. Islamic art workshop with Ayesha Gamiet.

As usual, their work was absolutely beautiful! I look forward to seeing the finished results next time I am in Cambridge.

If you like what you see here, and would like to book me for a workshop or an art commission, please do get in touch via the contact form on my website. I am happy to develop a bespoke workshop or course to suit your requirements. I teach from my studio in Windsor, Berkshire, UK, where I run Islamic art courses for the public, as well as engage in small group and private tuition. I can also travel to you – there are lots of options! Drop me an email to discuss further!

This entry was posted in Islamic Art Courses, Islamic geometry, News, Pattern in Islamic art, Student's Work, Teaching, Teaching resources. Bookmark the permalink.

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