BBC Learning Zone Clips

CLIP 13602

Art & the Kaaba

Art & the Kaaba
Key Info
  • Art & the Kaaba
  • Duration: 05:55
  • Rageh Omaar examines the Muslim approach to visual art and why human depiction is a source of such controversy. He travels to the epicentre of Muslim worship, Mecca, and explores the significance and symbolism of the Kaaba. Rageh explains that artists from the Islamic world have been discouraged from creating depictions in any human likeness if they are in religious context. In the Qur'an, God is referred to as 'Al Khaliq' or 'The Creator', and this has been a point of contention between clerics and artists for centuries. Many Muslims believe that by depicting the human form or the form of any creature, the artist is putting themselves in the role reserved for God.First broadcast on 'The Hidden Art of Islam' on BBC Four in March 2012.
  • Subject:

    Religious Education



  • Keywords: TheHiddenArtofIslam, Aniconism, Ka'aba, Kaaba, Qur'an, Quran, Hajj, prophet, Muhammad, Ibrahim, Abraham, Islam, Mecca
Ideas for use in class
  • Could be used as an introduction to the ideas, beliefs and culture that surrounds Islamic art.
Background details
  • Clip language : English
  • Aspect ratio : 16x9

BBC navigation

BBC © 2014 The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.