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Islam and Figurative Art

A discussion of why Islamic calligraphy is the primary art form in the Islamic world due to the fact that pictorial representation of living creatures is considered idolatrous and forbidden by most schools, on the grounds that images and representations of human beings encourage idolatry and attempt to usurp divine creativity.

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Islamic calligraphy is the primary art form in the Islamic world due to the fact that pictorial representation of living creatures is considered idolatrous and forbidden by most schools, on the grounds that images and representations of human beings encourage idolatry and attempt to usurp divine creativity. The Qur'an itself makes no direct reference to painting and the visual arts, though it firmly rejects the idolatrous worship of anything other than God. There are several
Hadith (traditions and sayings of Prophet Muhammad) reported where Muhammad condemned
specific objects with images of humans or animals, but it is debated whether the condemnation extended to all images or merely to the context in which they were found (in one case,
Muhammad was distracted from prayer by curtains embroidered with figures, but he had no objection to ...

Solution Summary

The Islamic rejection of figurative art is absolute as well as conditional. Regarding images that could be objects of worship, it is absolute.

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