The Zoroastrians considered the lotus flower sacred because it grew in the middle of a swamp, and they believed that an unsuitable living environment could not be a reason for human beings to grow up inadequately. The lotus lithograph engraved in Persepolis indicates the importance of this flower to the Iranians. In Eastern culture, the lotus flower is a symbol of purity since its path to flourishing is similar to cultivation, starting in the darkness of the swamp, trying to gain a goal, which is reaching the sunlight, until the moment it reaches the water surface. If a person follows the principles of truth, benevolence, and patience, he shall grow like a lotus. The petals of the lotus symbolize the different levels of abandonment of human dependence to achieve higher realms of cultivation.
Transmutation of Peace
Designed and Produced by Craftland
Design Consultant: Prof. Arash Shojaei
Made by: Master Hayas Hosseini
Designers: Emad Mahdian & Maryam Ghorbani
Illustration : Homana Nikooei - www.homana-nikooei.com
Photographer: Nastaran Shafaghat
One of our common concerns during our art studies was handicrafts and sustainable design. Therefore, we have tried to practice in line with this approach in various projects. In this issue, we have decided to address these common concerns in the form of a product design. We mapped the different meanings and shapes of the color blue and came across a world of concepts. From these concepts, we chose " water and inner peace". The reason behind our choice is the common concern for peace and water resources overuse around the world. Without water, life for all species is at stake.
We started to develop ideas in this path. Our Professor Arash Shojaei supported us with his valuable guidance. Since each material conveys a different meaning, we chose glass as the primary medium because of its fluidity, clarity, and resemblance to water.
To better understand the concept of peace, we availed the support of master Hayas Hosseini. One of the most fundamental types of peace is the inner peace within a family, which deals with the peace inside the nuclear family; therefore, the family was added as another keyword to our principal concepts. Once more, we came up with ideas and redesigned our product. Master Hayas also tested several different types of glass based on our design, and in the end, various forms were created. The technique used to make this product is called Lampworking.
Eventually, a collection named "Transmutation of Peace'' was created. In this collection, the transmutation of blue water drops into an iconic dove of peace is witnessed. In ancient Greek mythology, the dove symbolizes love and rebirth, and in ancient Japan, the dove carrying a sword symbolized the end of the war. The branch of the olive tree in the dove’s mouth is also another symbol of these concepts. We have tried to depict the family as a concept comprising four members (father, mother, daughter, and son); at each phase, all members complement one another and serve a general notion. Each member might be at a different phase simultaneously on a trajectory in line with the overall objectives of the whole.
Our glass bird with an olive branch is a message of harmony from Craftland to the world. We hope to take a small but effective step in the direction of peace and harmony as global concerns.
Flying peacock on crown
Design team: Sina Askari, Atefe Mirsane, Maryam Ghorbani
Execution team: Emad Mahdian and Salehe Hoseinzade Alavi
Manufacturer and Supervisor: Sina Askari
Wood Bending: Majid Alinaghi
3D model: Hasan Esfandiari
Photographer: Amir Masoud Samari
Sheikh Lotfollah Mosque is a famous masterpiece of Iranian architecture, the Crafland Team chose this national monument as a source of inspiration since its presence seemed vital in the current issue of this magazine. When talking about Isfahan, mentioning the masterpiece of Naghsh-e Jahan Square will be inevitable. However, sometimes words do not suffice to capture the meaning comprehensively, especially when the topic is a monument as glamorous as this mosque. Therefore, we have tried to demonstrate the connection between human and architecture to manifest such magnificent beauty. Although, the glory and elegance of this mosque whose main hall ceiling designs and patterns mesmerize every entering soul can not be captured in a small piece of artwork, we have created this piece to praise the sanctity of this unique and fascinating beauty. Time has failed to diminish the beauty of this building. When you enter the courtyard of the mosque, your eyes are illuminated by the light and glow of its skylights which shine like little pieces of Khatam above your head as if you were wearing a headpiece out of light and Khatam. You raise your head to find the source of the glow and stare at the ceiling. While you are standing humble in front of the charm of ceiling designs your eyes will be tied to the twisting peacock feathers which the ceiling design resembles.
In the designing process, we put all our effort to coordinate the architectural design with a handicraft technique in this product. We adapted its pattern so that the executions of our head ornament resemble the executions of the building. The opening rhythm of the peacock tail, which is engraved under the dome-shaped roof of the mosque, has been narrowed in another form in our work, from the center of the head to the sides of the ears so that it gives the product a new identity. For us, this work was a mental image that became an object. As if we intended to extricate this mental spiritual mood residing in our head in order to be able to put it on our head as a concrete object. On the other hand, the Khatam used in the work refers to the arrangement and accuracy of this building.
This work is made of a combination of four techniques in wood art. The main frame of the work is made of walnut wood using the bending (Khamkary) method. Its surface consists of pieces that are executed in two ways. A row of pieces, parts of which are carved and inlaid in the mosaic style; and in other rows, the Yazdi-Bandi wooden pieces can be seen. This part of the work is exactly what always happens in handicrafts; a concept that we have heard and are familiar with for a long time: “each handicraft has its own unique identity which is created at the moment”. We may never again find exactly a piece of wood with the same design and pattern which makes an art unique adding to its value. Our supervisor had a key role in this unique creation. The project master, Mr. Sina Askari, who is a professional specialist in performing the Yazdi-Bandi technique on wood, suggested adding an urban element of architectural space to the original design. His suggestion duplicated the beauty of the design since the inspiration by the architectural details of the mosque magnified the value of the product.
One of the other techniques used in this work is Khatamkari, which has been quoted as having its roots in Shiraz, but reached its peak in Isfahan during the Safavid period. Khatam is made up of a combination of polygons of wood, metal and bone. A delicate and elaborate art that is used to decorate surfaces in objects in the form of mosaics. We have tried to maintain the originality of the technique, as well as applying a deconstructive approach taken from the contemporary point of view to this technique. In this work, the rows of Khatam are not seen next to each other as the conventional traditions of this art; but a single star that is surrounded by six hexagons appears as a shining jewel. Also, Atefe's view on khatam in jewelry has been very effective in the production of this work. The results of her studies and designs during these years can be seen along with her usual design style.