The principle of movement in Moroccan design, as a source of inspiration for contemporary artistic applications
: Practice-based research in art and design

  • Naser Al-Rafaei

    Student thesis: Doctoral Thesis


    This project focuses on utilizing the principle of movement contained in traditional Moroccan design (PMMD) for the production of new and inventive artworks. The PMMD is one of the main concepts that rules the creation and construction of design elements; it consists of a group of advanced technical procedures applied to achieve the highest levels of unity, harmony, variation and rhythm between lines and shapes. Great consideration in the PMMD is given to the viewer's perception, as all parts are formed to be equally interesting and to work harmoniously together suggesting ways for the viewer's eye to interact with and move in and throughout the composition.

    The purpose of this research is to examine viable methods for stimulating new ideas by taking the aesthetic and technical significances of the PMMD as a source of creative inspiration. The work involved analyzing the relationship between form, method and perception in traditional compositions by exploring the role of PMMD in 1) the process of creating and shaping design elements separately, 2) methods of relating the lines and shapes of different design components. Data on PMMD was collected from recent literature on Islamic art and Moroccan design, from interviews with master-craftsmen, and from my personal analyses and observations. The studio engagement, which is represented in a group of oil, batik and acrylic paintings, explored the transformation of PMMD's arrangements to my personal artistic style, in which I offer varied ways of developing, refining and connecting the traditional forms with contemporary concepts of art.
    Date of AwardMar 2009
    Original languageEnglish
    Awarding Institution
    • University of Brighton
    SupervisorPeter Seddon (Supervisor) & Paddy Maguire (Supervisor)

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