Ottoman Turks Created Beautiful Calligraphy Displayed On Dried Leaves

On its own, calligraphy is already an intricate craft that takes months or even years to master. So, rendering it on a delicate canvas would only mean doubling the effort and the difficulty.  Well, apparently, calligraphers in Ottoman Turkey were up for this challenge as they created enchanting leaf calligraphy that showcases the complexity and versatility of the Arabic language.

Online art platform Bayt Al Fann recently took to their Twitter page to share exquisite examples of this magnificent technique. Each piece features a swooping Arabic script in gold that pops against a translucent dried leaf. The coarse pattern of the leaf veins and the elegant flourishes of the script create a charming contrast that gives the piece more visual interest.





This enchanting leaf calligraphy technique by the Ottoman Turks showcases the complexity and versatility of the Arabic language

Singapore’s Asian Civilisations Museum is home to an extensive collection of these alluring calligraphic compositions on leaves. According to the museum, this elevated art form rose to prominence particularly in Ottoman Turkey during the 19th century.




Following the indispensable role of religion at the time, Quran verses, prayers, and poetry were popular theme choices for most calligraphers

To take their compositions to the next level, some calligraphers even produced scripts that took the shape of animals, fruits, and other objects like ships and vases. Needlessly to say, this technique requires great attention to detail and mastery of the craft.


“The leaf has to be dried, and the tissue has to be removed slowly so as to leave the skeletal membrane. The stencil of the composition is placed behind the leaf and the gold ink with gum Arabic is applied over it.”



Check out the entire thread to see more of these stunning dazzling pieces, and feel free to follow Bayt Al Fann to learn more about Islamic art and culture.

Source: Bayt Al Fann Twitter | Website