A new vision about hands' drawing in the Arab painting

Document Type : research articles



The Arab Painting School is one of the most important artistic of Islamic painting. Therefore, there have been a lot of studies about its representatives in term of classification of their images, their artistic characteristic and methods. However, none of these studies clearly indicates the different patterns of painting hands in this school, some of which were carried out in a number of scenarios in a manner contrary to logic, which is reflected in many of the paintings, and the remarkable thing here is that this difference may be drawn in the hands of one person only while drawing the rest of the hands of the characters in the same visualization in a correct and logical manner. All of that confirms the painter’s knowledge of the correct technique of hands drawing, and it is also likely that there is a certain reason behind the drawing of the hand of this person in a different way to reality. This study traces and includes these models to discover the nature of this method, and to explain the reasons which propelled the painters of the Arab Painting School to implement it in their various images.


Main Subjects

  1. 1.      Abd Al-ʾal,(Moḥammad Ibrahim), ʾIlm al-Ramī, FounuhwaAdwath fi ḍawʾ al-Makhtoṭat al-Mamlukīah Dearasa Ḥaḍāriah Atharih, (since of Throwing the bow and its Tools in the Light of the Mamluk Military Manuscripts), A Civilized Archaeological Study, Unpublished PhD Thesis, Faculty of Art, Ain Shams University, 2018.
    Aḥmad(ʾAbd al-Raziq), Al-Fan al-Islamī Ḥata nehayat al-ʾAsr al-Fatimī, (Islamic Arts until the end of the Fatimid era, Cairo, 2006.
    1. Al-Bāshā (Ḥassan), Al-Taṣwīr al-Islamīfī al-’Isūr al-Wustá (Islamic Painting in the Middle Ages), Cairo, 1992.
    2. Al-Shoky (Aḥmad), "Taṣāwīr Al- Madrash al-ʾArabiah fi ḍawʾ al- qawāʾid al-Ḥadithaliʾilmloghat al-Gasad" (The Arab painting in the shadow of new basics of the Body Language), The Fifteenth Conference of the Arab Archaeologists, Cairo, 2012.
    3. Al-Thaʿālabī, Fiqh al-Loghahwa Sir al-ʿarabiah (Jurisprudence of Language and the secret of Arabic), the realization of ʿAbd al-Razik al-Mahdi, Beirut, 2002.
    4. ʾAtrīs (Naīef Maḥmoud), Fan al-Taṣwīr,(The Art of Painting), Dar al-Rātyb, Beirut, DT.
    5. Barbara And Allan Pease, The Definitive Book of Body Language: The Hidden Meaning Behind People's Gestures and Expressions, Australia, 2004.
      1. Bear (Eva), "The Human Figure in Early Islamic Art: Some Preliminary Remarks", Muqarnas, Vol. 16, 1999.
      2. Bisheh(Ghazi).,The Umayyads: The rise of Islamic Art, from, The Umayyads The Rise of Islamic Art, Schubert(S).,(ed), Museum with no Frontiers, Jordan, 2010.
      3. Ettinghausen( Richard), Arab Painting, New York, 1962.
      4. Farġali (Abu al-Ḥamd), Al-Taṣwīr al-Islamī, Nsha’th, Madiarsh, Mawkifal-Islam Minh, Islamic Painting, Its Origins, Schools, Position of Islam) Cairo, 1991.)
      5. Fowden (Garth), QusayrAmra: Art and the Umayyad Elite in Late Antique Syria, London, 2004.
      6. Grabar(Oleg), "Islamic Art and Byzantium", Dumbarton Oaks Papers, Vol. 18, 1964.
      7. Grabar (Oleg), "The Painting of the Six Kings at Quṣayr 'Amrah", ArsOrientalis, Vol. 1, 1957 .
      8. Grabar (Oleg), The Formation of Islamic Art, London, 1937.
      9. Grube (Ernst), "A Drawing of Wrestlers in the Cairo Museum of Islamic Art", Quaderni di StudiArabi, Vol. 3,1985.
      10. Ḥassan (Zaki Muḥammad),Knowz al-Fatimīun, Treasures of the Fatimids, Cairo, 1937.
      11. Ḥussein (Maḥmoud Ibrāhīm) Al-Fnūn al-Islamīh fi al-ʾaṣr al-Fatimī,(Islamic painting in the Fatimid era), Cairo, 1999.
      12. Ḥussein (Maḥmoud Ibrāhīm), Al- Madrash fi al-Taṣwīr al-Islamī (The School In Islamic Painting), Cairo, 2002, p.116.
      13. Leonardo da Vinci, Naẓarīat al-Taṣwīr, (Theory of painting), translation and presentation by ʾAdel Al-Sīwī, Family Library, General Book Authority, Cairo, 2005.
      14. Lomis (Andrew), Drawing the Head and Hands, New York, 2001.
        1. ʿOkasha (Tharwat), Mawsoʿat al-Taṣwīr al-Islamī (Encyclopaedia of Islamic Painting), Lebanon Library, Beirut, 2001.
        2. Zaki(ʾAbd al- Raḥmān), al-fan al-Islā, (Islamic Art), Dar al -Mʿaārif, Cairo, 1984.
        3. https://www.britishmuseum.org/research/collection_online/collection_object_details.aspx?objectId=265816&partId=1&images=true 7/1/2019s Filed under Revan 1638, folios 118 verso and 119 recto. (Accessed in 12/4/2019).
    1. Alan M. Wing, and others., The Neurophysiology and Psychology of Hand Movements, Patrick Haggard, England, 1996.
    4.      Al- Ḥarīrī, Maqāmātal- Ḥarīrī, Cairo, 1872.

    5.      Al-Bahnasī (Salaḥ), Fan Al-Taṣwīr fi ʿalsr al-Islamī(The Art of Painting in the Islamic Period, C1, Origination and Innovation), Cairo, 2007. 

    9.      Arnold, (T.W), and Grohmann, (A)., The Islamic Book. A Contribution to its Art and History from the VII-XVIII Century, Paris and New York, 1929

    10.  Atil (Esin), "Mamluk Painting in the Late Fifteenth Century", Muqarnas, vol.2, 1984, pp. 159-171.

    15.  Contadini, (Anna), and Others., Arab Painting: Text and Image in Illustrated Arabic Manuscripts, Leiden, 2007.

    23.  Ḥassan (ZakiMuḥammad), Atlas al-Fonwna-lzokhrofiah al-Islamīahwa al-Taṣawīr (Atlas of Islamic Decorative Arts and Painting), Cairo, 1981.

    29.  Meḥrez (Jamāl), "Al-ṣwīr al-Shakhṣiah fi Al-Taṣwīr al-Islamī", Journal of the Faculty of Arts, Cairo University, No. 8, 1, 1946

    30.  O'kane (Bernard)., "Text and Paintings in the in Al-Wāsiṭī Maqāmāt", ArsOrientalis, Vol. 42, 2012.
    31.  ʿOkasha (Tharwat), Fan al-Wāsiṭī Men Khilal Maqāmāt al- Ḥarīrī Atha rIslamī Moṣawar (The Art ofal- Wāsiṭī through the Maqāmāt al- Ḥarīrī: An Islamic Illustrated objct), Cairo, 1992.
    33.  Roxburgh, (David)., "In Pursuit of Shadows: Al-Hariri's Maqamat", Muqarnas, Vol. 30, 2013.