Work on Quran’s largest copy underway in Karachi
KARACHI: Famous Pakistani artist, Shahid Rassam, is spending his days and nights these days creating the largest copy of a gold-plated Quranic script crafted out of aluminium on a big canvas.
Since 2017, Rassam has been working with more than 200 people at the Karachi Arts Council on his project. The work on the holy book’s largest copy is expected to be completed by 2026, said Anadolu Agency.
The rare artwork is about 8.5-feet long and 6.5-feet wide. It is likely to break the record currently held by a copy of the Quran measuring 6.5-feet long and 4.5-feet wide. and it is kept at the Kul Sharif Mosque in Kazan, Russia. It was created in Afghanistan in 2017.
The 49-year-old artist said that in more than 1,400 years, it was the first time that the complete Quranic script was being written on aluminium. Previously, traditional materials, such as wood, animal skin, paper and cloth, were used.
“This is my lifetime project,“ Rassam told Anadolu Agency while his team continued concentrating on their work.
Rassam claimed he was bearing all the cost of the piece of art himself until now without any financial assistance from the government or any other institution. Without naming any country, he said, “Some foreign governments, however, have approached me in this regard.”
Rassam, 49, has been spending 10 hours daily on the project. He took two years to make the first two pages of the Holy Quran.
“It’s more than a challenging task, and equally sensitive [in terms of the sanctity of the Quran]. One minor mistake can ruin the whole effort,” he noted.
The Pakistani artist is also aiming to showcase his artwork at the ongoing Dubai expo 2020 in November.
Rassam said that Turkish, Arabic and Iranian art designs had inspired his work.
“We have created our own design [to cast the Quran] after studying Turkish, Arabic and Iranian designs. It is not a mixture of these designs, but it is an inspiration.”
In the first step, the Karachi-based artist said, the letters were cast in clay, which was later plastered and then changed into fibre before they were cast in aluminium.
Over 200-kg of gold, 2,000-kg of aluminium and 600 canvas rolls will be used to cast 77,430 words on 550 pages. In a bid to decorate the work, rubies, sapphires and emeralds will also be used, he added.
Italian glazing technique and acrylic colours have also been used to develop the design, as it can last for hundreds of years, said Rassam.
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