Antonius Bui’s Exquisitely Intricate Paper Cut Screens

Antonius Bui Exquisitely Intricate Paper Cut Screens

Antonius Bui is a Vietnamese American paper cut artist, recently graduated from the Maryland Institute College of Art. Captivated by notions of spirituality and the necessity of human suffering, Antonius primarily plays in the realm of hand-cut paper. He is drawn to the meditative process of working by hand and the paradoxical qualities of paper itself. Drawing inspiration from a paper he wrote about Jali screens during his time in India and fascinated by the layers of meaning behind the jali, he has composed this exquisite and intricate nature paper cut series based on his personal interpretation.

Antonius Bui Exquisitely Intricate Paper Cut ScreensAntonius Bui Exquisitely Intricate Paper Cut Screens
Antonius Bui Exquisitely Intricate Paper Cut Screens

Jalis are perforated screens found in Islamic architecture that allow for the passage of air, sound, and light. Decorated with arabesque, calligraphy, and/or geometric patterns, the jali is an architectural experience that allows viewers to transcend the natural world and concentrate on the divinity of Allah. By defining Islamic art through the lens of the Koran, and analyzing the elements of Islamic decoration, the metaphors behind the jali are understood. However, the history of the Mughal Empire and its emperors emphasizes the political necessity of the arts, challenging the authenticity and drive behind the investment in Islamic art and architecture.

Antonius Bui Exquisitely Intricate Paper Cut Screens
Antonius Bui Exquisitely Intricate Paper Cut Screens

Research on the lives and works of Rasheed Araeen and Nasreen Mohamedi, two contemporary artists from the Eastern world, provides insight into different uses of Islamic decoration in the modern art world. Taking visits to Islamic sites to further support his work, Antonius Bui has proven that it doesn’t matter whether or not the viewer is informed of the layers behind the jali or if the builder had the right intentions in mind. All that matters is that the jalis are now here for viewers to feel a reaction.

Antonius Bui Exquisitely Intricate Paper Cut Screens
Antonius Bui Exquisitely Intricate Paper Cut Screens

images courtesy of Antonius Bui via submission

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