Sufism captured on canvas

ART SPEAK

Sufism captured on canvas

Devotion to God is a feeling that might not be expressed in words but when it come to painting, an artist can describe the thought with colours.

That is what Farkhanda Khan does with her brush that only moved when Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan’s qawwali played in the background. The resultant was beautiful paintings titled Ishq Haqiqi on Sufism by Khan.

Having done her Masters in Fine Arts from Aligarh Muslim University, Farkhanda has painted a number of aspects of life on her canvas before she adopted the Sufi thought.

“Sufism is not a religion, it is a philosophical thought. What inspired me to paint this thought was the madness of Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan saab. His madness or masti in music is the madness in Sufism that makes the devotee one with God.”

Her brush was so addicted to the singer’s voice that it just failed to move in absence of the late maestro’s music. Farkhanda describes her paintings as if they have transferred his qawaalis in her work.

She paints not just men but also women who have renunciated the world and adopted sufism.

“I read works of Hazrat Rabia-Al-Basri who is a known sufi saint and writer. Her intellectualism was the inspiration behind my painting female sufi saints,” says the artist.
One of the masterpieces, Dancing dervish done in acrylic represents a visual conversation between the surrendered soul and the supreme ‘Soul’.

It is at this time that the heart realises its true nature and its immense source. ‘Haal’ or whirpooling is a soothing experience, which takes the viewer to a different world.

The artist’s search revolves around the thought of Oneness with God and how to achieve it through devotion and love.

Her paintings are also title accordingly: One God, Search in Depth, God of All and others, narrate this theme. “My aim is to promote one God in religion through my works.”

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