November 9, 2013 8:56:46 PM
Intricate miniature paintings and works in the Persian art of Illumination, or Tazhib, are part of an exhibit by Sheida Riahi, who is the featured speaker at the Columbus-Lowndes Public Library Wednesday at 12:30 p.m. The Mississippi State University Department of Art lecturer will explore the significance and methods of the Thuluth style of calligraphy and its tools, and will demonstrate her work.
The program is in conjunction with a grant received by the library titled Bridging Cultures Bookshelf: Muslim Journeys. The grant consists of a collection of books, films and other resources that introduces the American public to the complex history and culture of Muslims in the United States and around the world.
Riahi's exhibit includes work highlighting Koranic passages as well as Arabic translations of biblical passages. Tazhib artwork is created by repeating geometrical and decorative forms and patterns from nature, combined with natural colors. Tazhib is used in the decoration of manuscripts as well as buildings such as palaces and Persian mosques.
Friday, Nov. 15
Muslim Journeys continues Friday with "Women in Islam: Misconceptions and Realities" at noon. Dr. Kim Whitehead, assistant professor of ReligiousStudies and English at Mississippi University for Women, discusses common misconceptions about Muslim women, rights guaranteed to Muslim women, their contributions to Islamic history and the diversity of Muslim women's roles today.
Tuesday, Nov. 19
The public is invited to a screening of "Persepolis" at the library at 2 p.m. The 96-minute film is a poignant coming-of-age story about a precocious and outspoken young Iranian girl. It begins during the Islamic Revolution.
All Muslim Journeys programs are free.
In addition to Riahi's artistic work, an exhibit by mixed media artist Lori K. Gordon is also at the library through November. "Six Degrees: West to East" is a series of collage and mixed media works inspired by the Gulf Coast resident's travels to the Middle East and Europe.
The Columbus-Lowndes Public Library was one of 842 libraries nationwide and one of only three chosen in the state of Mississippi to be awarded the Muslim Journeys Bookshelf.
Developed by the National Endowment for the Humanities and the American Library Association, the Muslim Journeys Bookshelf is intended to address both the need and desire of the American public for trustworthy and accessible resources about Muslim beliefs and practices and the cultural heritage associated with Islamic civilizations.
For more information about the Muslim Journeys series and resources at the Columbus-Lowndes Public Library located at 314 Seventh St. N., visit the blog muslimjourneyscolumbuslibrary.wordpress.com or contact Mona Vance-Ali, 662-329-5304.
Jan Swoope is the Lifestyles Editor for The Commercial Dispatch.