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April Vacation Week

April 17–20

Art in Bloom

April 26–28

Celebrate Arab American History Month

Porcelain white plate with black, dark royal blue, and gold decoration.

American (Iraqi, born in Egypt) artist Wasma’a Chorbachi inscribed her Bismillah plate (2007) with a highly stylized yet deeply meaningful inscription in Arabic: from right to left the plate reads, “bismillah,” or “In the name of God, the Beneficent, the Merciful.” This phrase opens nearly every chapter of the Qurʾan, and Chorbachi highlights its importance with her use of sharp black letters against a distinct white background.

We are highlighting this striking work by the Boston-area artist as part of Arab American Heritage Month, but you can view two of her works, including this one, any time of year in our Arts of Islamic Cultures Gallery (Gallery 175). You can also find Chorbachi’s work on view in the exhibition “Tender Loving Care.”