Author: Abdul Adheem Peter Sanders
Publisher: Inspiral Books (2011)
Pages: 120 Binding: Hardcover
Description from the publisher:
This volume of stunning photography discloses the spirituality and ethos of a people and vast geography of earth in a way that cannot be communicated through an academic treatise or lecture. The photos of this book include the nooks and horizons of Africa, the Arabian Peninsula, the Silk Route, and China -- the people, landscapes, and architecture of an expansive and often misunderstood region.
As the readers glance at the photos, they will find themselves interested in both sides of the lens: the objects of Sanders' insights and also the artist's own spiritual sensitivity that has helped him "see" a story, for example, in an old wall of Morocco, in the languid gaze of an African girl, in the haunting arches of Andalusia, and in a peculiar tomb in the desert of Sudan. The photos are accompanied by quotations from various sources, including a variety of spiritual masters, the Prophet Muhammad, and the Quran (the Muslim scripture). Also included are appropriately brief histories of Mr. Sanders' experience in taking the photos. In the Shade of the Tree is Mr. Sanders' first published volume, although his collection of unique photography number in the thousands and have been published in exhibits and numerous publications around the world.
PREFACE by Hamza Yusuf
In the Shade of the Tree is the result of many years of painstaking observation of shade. The word "photographer" literally means "one who writes with light." The photographer of this volume has been "capturing shade" for decades. Shade is a sign of God. The Quran says, Have you not considered your Lord how He extends the shade and had He willed He would have made it still. Then We made the sun its guide. Shade is an admixture of light and darkness. The cosmos is in fact shade and Peter Sanders has spent a lifetime reflecting on it. If beauty is in the eye of the beholder, then these pictures are a testimony to the beauty in Sanders' eye. He uses an odd yet wondrous mechanical device that captures for one brief moment a glimpse of beauty. The pictures in this book, while only brief moments of shade written in light captured by his discerning eye, will linger on in your memory long after you have closed the book.
Aramco World: This is a personal collection, a retrospective of Sanders' more than 30 years of travel in Muslim countries as an editorial and commercial photographer. It is a book by a master craftsman and artist who is himself a Muslim, and who continually strives to convey the inner beauty of the subject rather than promote any distinct photographic style. To this end, his captions are intimate and brief, and they play off quotations of scholars and poets. His compositions favor simplicity and elegant light. His people reflect a generosity of spirit, even an innocence, that Sanders himself no doubt elicited through his own rapport with them, and which he then captured in all its sincerity. There are grand images and disarmingly simple ones, such as a smiling Turkman woman holding an apple that, Sanders notes, became part of his own breakfast that morning. The result is a quiet book that, true to its title, is a moment of shade in our often over-lit culture.
Publishers Weekly: Photographer Peter Sanders offers arresting images of Muslim life around the globe.... Sanders' use of light and shadow shows him to be a true artist; the simplicity of these photos is glorious. There are exterior (and even some stunning interior) shots of mosques, including Beijing's 1,000-year-old Niujie Mosque and Al-Aksa Mosque in Jerusalem, as well as astonishing portraits of individuals. Sanders includes photos from much of the Muslim world, including West Africa, Saudi Arabia, Sudan, and Turkey.
Michael Sugich: In the Shade of the Tree is a unique photographic record of a world few outsiders gain access to and fewer still understand with any depth. Peter Sanders has devoted the last 30 years capturing an aspect of Islamic Civilization all too often ignored in an age of upheaval and change. His unprecedented and ravishing portfolio of a vibrant but vanishing world of Muslim saints and mystics across the Muslim world, counterpointed by haunting landscapes and architecture, is infused with a profound reflective serenity that could only be achieved by a master of his craft who is also a spiritual adept. The words accompanying these sweet and startling images are from the Quran, the Prophet Muhammad, spiritual masters, and the photographer himself.
ABOUT PETER SANDERS
Peter Sanders is internationally recognized as one of the world's leading photographers of the Islamic world. He began his career in the mid-1960's covering London's seminal rock-and-roll scene, capturing now legendary music icons in a collection that is considered a classic by collectors: images that include Bob Dylan, Jimi Hendrix, The Doors, The Who, The Rolling Stones, and others. Towards the end of the 1970's, Sanders' attention turned inward, which set him on a spiritual search that took him to India and led him to other parts of the Muslim world. All the while, Sanders captured his surroundings on film, creating a striking and disparate record of the last vestiges of traditional Muslim societies in transition. Sanders' own deep commitment to and love of traditional Islamic culture has brought him into intimate contact with people and places few photographers reach. "My photography has always been an extension of my life," he said. "Photography is a wonderful process -- a gift from God -- that has allowed me to learn so much about myself and the world around me. It's like chasing a moment, trying to capture a beautiful bird in flight." Japanese Art Critic, Tsuyoshi Kawasoe, says about Sanders' work, "The photographs are extremely, extraordinarily beautiful."
Previous ISBN 1929694148