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Islamic calligraphy exhibition seeks to restore compassion in fast-paced world

Stefanus Ajie

The Jakarta Post

Surakarta, Central Java  /  Fri, May 24, 2019  /  11:38 am
  • Among the highlights of the calligraphy exhibition Welas Asih (Compassion) at Balai Soedjatmoko Surakarta is Sujiwo Tejo’s piece titled 'Wajah-Wajah Leluhur' (Faces of Ancestors), which aims to convey the harmonious relationship between religion, art, and culture. 

    Among the highlights of the calligraphy exhibition Welas Asih (Compassion) at Balai Soedjatmoko Surakarta is Sujiwo Tejo’s piece titled 'Wajah-Wajah Leluhur' (Faces of Ancestors), which aims to convey the harmonious relationship between religion, art, and culture. 
OF JP/Stefanus Ajie

    Among the highlights of the calligraphy exhibition Welas Asih (Compassion) at Balai Soedjatmoko Surakarta is Sujiwo Tejo’s piece titled 'Wajah-Wajah Leluhur' (Faces of Ancestors), which aims to convey the harmonious relationship between religion, art, and culture. 

  • A painting by KH Mustofa Bisri, titled 'Berdzikir' (religious chanting) showcased at the Welas Asih (Compassion) exhibition at Balai Soedjatmoko, Surakarta, Central Java.

    A painting by KH Mustofa Bisri, titled 'Berdzikir' (religious chanting) showcased at the Welas Asih (Compassion) exhibition at Balai Soedjatmoko, Surakarta, Central Java. OF JP/Stefanus Ajie

    A painting by KH Mustofa Bisri, titled 'Berdzikir' (religious chanting) showcased at the Welas Asih (Compassion) exhibition at Balai Soedjatmoko, Surakarta, Central Java.

  • A painting by Nasirun, titled 'Imaji Perjalanan' (images of the journey) at the Welas Asih (Compassion)' exhibition at Balai Soedjatmoko, Surakarta, Central Java.

    A painting by Nasirun, titled 'Imaji Perjalanan' (images of the journey) at the Welas Asih (Compassion)' exhibition at Balai Soedjatmoko, Surakarta, Central Java. OF JP/Stefanus Ajie

    A painting by Nasirun, titled 'Imaji Perjalanan' (images of the journey) at the Welas Asih (Compassion)' exhibition at Balai Soedjatmoko, Surakarta, Central Java.

  • A visitor to the Welas Asih (Compassion) calligraphy exhibition at Balai Soedjatmoko,Surakarta, walks past a painting by Toyib Bukhoeri titled 'Asmaul Husna' (99 beautiful names of God)

    A visitor to the Welas Asih (Compassion) calligraphy exhibition at Balai Soedjatmoko,Surakarta, walks past a painting by Toyib Bukhoeri titled 'Asmaul Husna' (99 beautiful names of God) OF JP/Stefanus Ajie

    A visitor to the Welas Asih (Compassion) calligraphy exhibition at Balai Soedjatmoko,Surakarta, walks past a painting by Toyib Bukhoeri titled 'Asmaul Husna' (99 beautiful names of God)

  • A 'Hadroh' music performance by students of MAN 1 Surakarta at the opening of the Welas Asih (Compassion) exhibition in Balai Soedjatmoko, Surakarta, Central Java.

    A 'Hadroh' music performance by students of MAN 1 Surakarta at the opening of the Welas Asih (Compassion) exhibition in Balai Soedjatmoko, Surakarta, Central Java. OF JP/Stefanus Ajie

    A 'Hadroh' music performance by students of MAN 1 Surakarta at the opening of the Welas Asih (Compassion) exhibition in Balai Soedjatmoko, Surakarta, Central Java.

  • The Welas Asih (Compassion) calligraphy exhibition opens with lavish 'qasidah' (Islamic pop music) performance and 'shalawat' (religious chant praising prophet Muhammad).

    The Welas Asih (Compassion) calligraphy exhibition opens with lavish 'qasidah' (Islamic pop music) performance and 'shalawat' (religious chant praising prophet Muhammad). OF JP/Stefanus Ajie

    The Welas Asih (Compassion) calligraphy exhibition opens with lavish 'qasidah' (Islamic pop music) performance and 'shalawat' (religious chant praising prophet Muhammad).

OF

Nahdlatul Ulama cleric Mustofa “Gus Mus” Bisri, along with several prominent artists, unveiled their paintings of Islamic calligraphy at an art exhibition in Surakarta, Central Java. 

The exhibition, named Welas Asih (Compassion), is being held at the Soedjatmoko Culture Hall and showcases 35 pieces of Islamic calligraphy from 30 renowned artists, including Gus Mus, Sidik Martowidjojo and Sujiwo Tejo.

Welas Asih opened on Wednesday evening with lavish a qasidah (Islamic pop group) performance and shalawat (religious chant praising prophet Muhammad).

The exhibition emphasizes not only artistic iterations of Quranic verses but also surrealist interpretations of the calligraphic letters and symbols themselves. 

Soedjatmoko Culture Hall representative Zamroni said the exhibition served as an alternative avenue for those seeking more off-beat interpretations of Islamic calligraphy. 

“The art of calligraphy represents a combination of art and religion. Every piece of art represents the artists’ personal reckonings with faith,” he told The Jakarta Post

Among the highlights from the exhibition is Sujiwo Tejo’s piece, titled Wajah-Wajah Leluhur (Faces of Ancestors), which aims to convey the harmonious relationship between religion, art and culture. 

Read also: Hari Budiono's 'Memedi Sawah' exhibition scares away fear

National Calligraphy Lovers Community head Anis said the art of calligraphy could prove effective in restoring a sense of humility and compassion among the public. 

“The delicate beauty of Islamic calligraphy will instill compassion in the heart of the beholder, therefore counteracting hatred and arrogance,” he told the Post

The exhibition will run until Monday. (rfa/mut)

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