Influenced by her British and Pakistani roots, award-winning artist Maaida Noor has an interest in the rich heritage of Islamic arts, and the cultural values of the Muslim world. Noor finds this eternal radiance in the architecture of nature and its echo in the ancient arts of biomorphic patterns (arabesques), calligraphy and sacred geometry. She seeks to combine these universal languages to create work that speaks of peace and unity beyond cultural boundaries.
Noor was recently announced winner of the 2017 British Muslim Awards in the Arts and Cultural Awareness category. Her art has been displayed in Battersea Power Station, the Three Faiths Forum, various auction houses, and has been acquired by corporate and private collections including members of the Jordanian Royal Family.
Having obtained an Open Programme Diploma at The Prince’s Foundation: School of Traditional Arts, Noor’s appreciation of historic practices is combined with a desire for selfexpression, a love of watercolour as a medium and an acute sense of colour. The result is a mix of ancient disciplines with vivid colours and a modern expressive technique.
Zouq-e-Rang 2017 (SOLD)
Gouache and 23.5k and 18k shell gold on khādi paper
The name of the painting is of Urdu origin meaning ‘a delight of colours’.
A very detailed and intricate piece of Islamic illumination using traditional methods and materials.
Sūrah Ikhlas 2013 (£2100)
Watercolour on cold press paper
Say, ‘He is Allāh, [who is] One.
Allāh, the Eternal Refuge.
He neither begets nor is born.
Nor is there to Him any equivalent.
Sūrah al-Ikhlās 112:1-4
The word Ikhlās has been derived from its root word khls which means refined or purified. Al-Ikhlās is a Meccan Sūrah and is one of the earliest revelations of the Qur'ān. It is one of the exemplary Sūrahs in the Qur'ān, although it is amongst the shortest ones and has the most profound implications.
Qadr 2018 (SOLD)
Watercolour and 24k shell gold on khādi paper
Verily, all things have We created in proportion and measure
Sūrah al-Qamar 54:49
The concept of ‘Taqdir’ (or destiny) for Maaida and the inspiration comes from her favourite poet and philosopher Mohammad Iqbal. ‘Taqdir’ is derived from the word ‘Qadar’ which is used throughout the the Holy Qur'ān to represent the concepts of order, capacity and even measure and estimation.
Maaida uses this beautiful and multi-dimensional word to draw discipline into a form that combines all the various meanings into one place.
The Nukta (Dot) 2018 (£2760)
Watercolour and 24k gold leaf on khādi paper
Bulleh Shah, the Punjabi sufi poet describes all of creation within a dot by ‘Ek nuktay wich gal mukdi eh’ (A dot encompasses it all).
The ‘nukta’ for Maaida represents the collective of man’s existence - the physical as well as the metaphysical. Life takes form at particle level but further investigation reveals greater depth. The soul and the ‘nafs’ (ego), though immaterial, exist within the material.
Maaida explores the theme of the existent and the non-existent by nesting man’s vision, creativity and thus the beauty of the Divine Himself within a very physical and finite space. Maaida ponders and enquires of herself - ‘how can the infinitude of our Creator be contained within the created’.