United States > > > with Ruba in Jordan

I chose VAWAA for my trip as I was looking for an artist to improve my facility with, and understanding of, Islamic traditional geometric patterns. While there are many artists around the world doing geometric design, I wanted to learn at the source: the Middle East. I am experienced with the geometric construction of the designs as I am a geometry teacher, but VAWAA was able to connect me with exactly the right artist to help me expand my understanding of the artistic possibilities. In addition, I was introduced to new techniques and applications I had not considered. I was also interested in how the designs might reflect Muslim spirituality, so this content was specifically included in my time with the artist.

I came away from my experience with several successfully finished pieces, two of them in a medium (ceramics) and style (biomorphic design) I had never explored. I also came away with a deeper understanding of how the construction of the patterns reflected Muslim spirituality, something I had specifically requested. I plan to take what I learned into my Geometry classes, and to the World Religions, Art History, and ceramics classes taught at my school.