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A Prayer Mat that Transcends Boundaries through Design

Nada Debs the Levantine designer renowned for her ability to distil culture and craftmanship presents a unique new collection of spiritual carpets that spark a dialogue on the inter-connectedness of faith, right in time for Ramadan.

Aptly named ‘Transcendence’ the collection is a collaboration between Nada Debs and Zuleya by FBMI which is an initiative to support and engage carpet weavers in Afghanistan, mainly focusing on women. Meticulously hand-woven and divinely inspired, the collection of spiritual carpets reflects Nada Debs vision to unite people, places, culture and identity and this time she does it through faith, prayer and spirituality.

True to its name, the spiritual prayer carpets are not limited to one faith but transcend boundaries and borders, to spiritually connect the faithful through prayer and the divine calling of brotherhood, peace and human fraternity. The defining design factor for this connection is the arched doorway and dome, re-created within the carpet weave and reminiscent of religious architecture evident in mosques, minarets, shrines and ancient churches rooted in Byzantine architectural tradition, as early as the 7th century.

The alternating linear pattern evokes a sense of depth, transporting a person into another dimension of spiritual harmony, where the soul transcends the body and unites with the divine creator. The different textures on the carpet serve to awaken tactile senses as one attends the call of prayer or meditation, suited to his or her religious inclination.

“As craft custodians, we safe-guard a craft legacy by making it relevant to future generations through a signature design approach,” explains Nada. With the Middle East and specifically the UAE, positioned as a hub for inter-faith dialogue, peaceful co-existence, and religious tolerance and unity, the Transcendence Collection serves a three-fold purpose. It is a conscious collaboration to support unprivileged communities, while at its heart it maintains a distinctive Arab orientation to efficaciously enter the dawn of new materialism post-pandemic, where objects have souls, stories, and meaning, all woven into the tapestry of life by a multitude of hands from different cultures.

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For the Ramadan season, the collection is presented in special, limited-edition gift boxes designed by Nada Debs to create the reverence essential for a spiritually dictated creation. “The idea behind the Transcendence Prayer Carpet is in transcending the boundaries of religion through spirituality and design,” says Nada Debs. “I wanted to find the commonality amongst different religions and the arched pathway achieves that objective through design and purpose.”

The prayer carpets are available at Nada Debs, in four shades inspired by traditional Islamic colours of navy blue and beige, black and grey, maroon and red, green and coral.

All Images Courtesy Nada Debs