My work includes Drawings, Printmaking, Installations and Murals, inspired by ubiquitous Geometric Shapes observed in Science and Nature.
Many of the compositions, I create, have a close reference to historical Islamic Patterns, comprising of geometric divisions, forms and colours that use visual techniques drawn from its rich traditional arts culture.
These patterns transcend time and place, as in the structure of a snowflake, or a honeycomb exhibit an underlying hexagonal proportion since beginning of time and will continue to do so for till the end of time, and are based on Creation principles of proportion, balance, and harmony. Plato said, ‘Geometry is study of the eternally existent’ and is the basis of shape and form. It has been from here my personal inspiration to create patterns began to unfold.
In 2001, I completed a 2-year M.A. in Visual Islamic and Traditional Art, at HRH Prince Charles Traditional School of Arts (PTSA) in London.
In my work I closely identify with a Circle, a timeless symbol of Unity and also known as the Mother of Shapes, as a reference, one that is simultaneously organic and mathematical.
My conceptual ideas are initially developed by drafting a pattern from a dot and central circle, using a compass and ruler which is systematically divided to reveal a complex geometric arrangement.
My creative process then becomes intuitive and experimental as compositions evolve from the act of doing, not planning, like solving a jigsaw puzzle. It’s not to say I have no thought about what I am creating. My compositions organically emerge within the limitations of the materials.
I have travelled extensively and photographed many culturally rich and diverse regions, landscapes, architectural spaces and people in places such as Iran, Morocco, Peloponnese, Turkey, Pakistan, Egypt, Malaysia, Saudi Arabia, Lebanon, Spain and Syria. Having the opportunity to experience many Traditions, some disappearing in times of modernity and technology, has provided abundance of knowledge, inspiration, understanding and respect for the very concept of Tradition which subconsciously feeds into my work’. Saba Rifat
‘That’s the beauty of art–we strive for perfection but never achieve it. The journey is everything’ Rafe Esquith