Mirosław Majewski

“Practical Geometric Pattern Design: Geometric Patterns from Islamic Art” is a masterful exploration of an art form that has captured the awe of architects, designers, and art enthusiasts alike. This book is the third installment in a series dedicated to the intricate world of geometric patterns in Islamic art, and it’s as much a tutorial as it is a historical lens on a rich cultural tradition.

The work is meticulously structured to serve as a comprehensive guide, offering a wealth of insights for both the neophyte encountering the complexities of Islamic geometric art for the first time, and the seasoned artist or designer seeking to deepen their understanding of its intricacies.

Practical Geometric Pattern Design skillfully unpacks the mystical allure of geometric patterns, rooting its teachings in the foundational principles of Islamic art. It draws the reader inside the craftsmanship that has decorated the walls of history’s most ornate mosques and palaces, revealing the mathematical precision and philosophical symbolism woven into each design.

The author’s approach rests on the conviction that to truly grasp the elegance of these patterns, one first must comprehend their underlying structure. Chapter 2 is a deep-dive into dissecting complex patterns, illuminating the methodical process that guides the untrained eye to discern the order in what may initially appear enigmatic.

Chapters 3 through 5 ascend the reader into more complex realms, traversing patterns built on triangular and square grids and then venturing into the realms of hexagonal and dodecagonal patterns with local symmetries of D6 and D12. It is a testament to the book’s pedagogical strength that such technical descriptions are rendered digestible and stimulating.

One of the book’s distinctive features is its examination of octagonal patterns in Chapters 6 and 7. Here, the author distinguishes between the eastern patterns of Central Asia and the western motifs of Morocco and Spain. This comparative approach crystallizes the book’s central tenet of Islamic geometric patterns as a cross-pollination of artistic expression and scientific precision.

The final chapter gives a brief overview of the elusive decagonal patterns and nods to further readings supplied by Istanbul Design Publishing‘s earlier works – an inviting gesture to indepth exploration.

“Practical Geometric Pattern Design” is didactic yet remarkably accessible, serving both as an academic text and as an invitation to practice. The instructions are clear, allowing readers to directly engage with the art through experimentation and design. Its pages become a sandbox for the imagination, where artists of all levels can play with form, symmetry, and space.

This book is an invaluable resource for anyone interested in the fusion of history, mathematics, and cultural art. Whether the reader seeks to adopt these techniques for modern design projects or simply to appreciate the aesthetic prowess of historic Islamic art, “Practical Geometric Pattern Design” is a significant artistic and educational resource that undoubtedly earns its place on the bookshelf.

It stands as a vivid reminder of the unity between art and science, the seen and unseen, serving as both a tutorial and tribute to the geometric patterns that continue to enchant the human spirit.