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Meem

  • Object type

  • Museum number

    2007,6031.1

  • Title (object)

    • Meem
  • Description

    Ink, sealing wax and paint on muslin. On the upper and lower bands are images of the Archangel Gabriel and the mythical horse Buraq. Elsewhere there are verses from the Qur'an and repeated Arabic inscriptions as well as three brass geomantic dice.

  • Producer name

  • School/style

  • Date

    • 1958
  • Materials

  • Technique

  • Dimensions

    • Length: 138.8 centimetres
  • Curator's comments

    Armajani's description of work: "The first band is the Archangel Gabriel sitting and then in flight, followed by the repeated words ‘Ya huwa’ (‘Oh he’ in reference to God). There are also the words ‘In the name of God, the Beneficent, God the merciful’, followed by the phrase ‘He is the best of all witnesses’. The last image on the top band is of Noah’s boat. The second band starts with ‘Ya huwa’. This is repeated as the Sufis do while chanting. The seal which is repeated is from my grandfather’s ring. Then we have the letter meem (‘M’) for the Prophet Muhammad. In Islamic numerology meem has the value of 40. (The letter ‘M’ has two aspects. One is the spiritual side and the other is the physical side. These two sides are veiled by 40 veils and in order to lift these veils, a person must be in seclusion and meditate in the remembrance of God for 40 days.)

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  • Location

    Not on display

  • Exhibition history

    Exhibited:
    2008 7 Feb-30 Apr, Dubai International Finance Centre, Word into Art, cat.59

  • Subjects

  • Associated names

  • Acquisition name

  • Acquisition date

    2007

  • Department

    Middle East

  • Registration number

    2007,6031.1

Painted textile in several bands. On the upper and lower bands are images of the Archangel Gabriel and the mythical horse Buraq. Elsewhere there are verses from the Qur'an and repeated Arabic inscriptions as well as three brass geomantic dice.

Painted textile in several bands. On the upper and lower bands are images of the Archangel Gabriel and the mythical horse Buraq. Elsewhere there are verses from the Qur'an and repeated Arabic inscriptions as well as three brass geomantic dice.

Reproduced by permission of the artist. © The Trustees of the British Museum

Image description

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Object reference number: RFM37791

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