Ibrahim Said

@ibrahimsaidceramic | website

My interests lie in expanding on forms and principles rooted in my culture: namely ancient Egyptian pottery and Islamic arts.  Through bridging the languages of function and sculpture, I hope to conjure stories about rituals, memorializing, and cultural proverbs, that feel both ancient and currently relevant.  Through the use of geometry, it is possible to explore ideas about perfection, order, and infinity that I find powerful and humbling.

The inspiration for my forms come from vases of the Naqada III period in Egypt from 3200-3000 BCE.  The strong lines and bold shapes of that period are my favorite.  Their delicate finials and small bases embody an elegance, lightness, and strength that are still unmatched for me.  My carvings are inspired by artifacts of water jug filters made between 900-1200 ACE in Fustat, Egypt.  Although the carved designs were made for functional reasons, to filter out river sediment, the beauty of geometric, floral, and animal designs are prevalent in Islamic Arts and adorned many day-to-day objects what was particularly poetic about them was that only those drinking could see the designs: it embodied a principle emphasizing inner beauty rather than the external and emphasized an individual contemplative experience.  Searching for ways to bring these ancient carvings and their narratives back to life has become one of my artistic challenges – I always want my work to feel Egyptian and build on that rich cultural history.  I believe the act of making is in itself an act of devotion and meditation to the beauty present and possible in the world.  I believe art is a testimony to what needs to be known, and held onto.