Russian Artist Who Converted to Islam Promotes Turkish Traditions in Moscow

A Russian artist who converted to Islam is promoting Turkish and Islamic traditions in the capital of Russia with her works.

Mariya Komisa, painter and pottery master, is currently displaying Turkish culture and heritage in the “Letter of the traveler” exhibition at the State Museum of Oriental Art in Moscow.

Komisa told Anadolu Agency about her admiration for eastern and Turkish culture, as well as her encounter with Islam.

Noting that she has been interested in eastern and Islamic culture since her childhood, the Russian artist said this culture is very close to her.

About her conversion to Islam a few years ago, she said: “Everything started from Bakhchysarai in Crimea where I was given the Quran [Muslim holy book] as a gift. I became a Muslim there.”

She said that after accepting Islam, she and her husband moved to Turkey and lived for a long time in Bursa, the former capital of the Ottoman Empire.

“Turkey accepted me very warmly. I gradually started to speak Turkish and wearing the hijab … nobody believed that I came from Moscow.”

She said Turkey is unique in terms of cultural diversity, and she tries to reflect the Ottoman and Islamic heritage in her works.

Komisa said she is influenced by Sufism, the mystical face of Islam, and is also inspired by the works of Ottoman artist Matrakci Nasuh.

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