Understanding Mazmuur Naafi: The Arabic Psalm of Nephi

Understanding Mazmuur Naafi: The Arabic Psalm of Nephi
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Understanding Mazmuur Naafi: The Arabic Psalm of Nephi

Reviewer Josh E. Probert

Arabic calligraphy is arguably the defining form of Islamic art. Jamal Qureshi has combined this centuries-old tradition and the geometric forms of Ottoman architecture with one of the richest passages from the Book of Mormon, the Psalm of Nephi (2 Nephi 4:16-35), to create an artwork rich in meaning. The artwork is visual praise; and it represents the way in which religious artforms are fluid, transgenerational, and adaptable to new meanings. This short essay explains the artwork by contextualizing it in both Islamic and Mormon traditions.