Ekphrasis as a Qualitative Approach in Visual Text Analysis (Case Study: Bahram Gur in Haft Gonbad (Seven Domes)

Document Type : Research Paper


Ph.D. Student of Art Research, Department of Art Research, Faculty of Theories & Art Studies, University of Art, Tehran, Iran.


The purpose of this article is to understand the similarity and correspondence between the elements of the written text of the story of “Bahrām Gur in Seven Domes” in Haftpeykar, written by Nezami and its visual narrative in Bahrām Gur in Seven Domes Pictorial rug. To achieve such a goal, this article used a two-stage theoretical framework. Thus, a descriptive-analytical method and four components are used in this article. These four descriptive components are: 1. Description of persons 2. Places 3.  Times 4. Events.
After the transition from the first stage of this theoretical framework and after measuring the correspondence of the visual text to the written text, in the second stage, by using two subtypes of intertextuality, which are allusion and citation, an attempt was made to answer the main question:  Is “Bahrām Gur and Seven Domes” rug a creative and allusive text or repetitive and cited text?
In response to whether the pictorial carpet “Bahrām Gur in Seven Domes” is a creative and allusive text or a repetitive and cited one these results are obtained: it can be said that although the elements and motifs of the pictorial rug which were examined through the four components in some details have common features with Haftpeykar and ekphrasis has occurred in some elements, and they are faithful to the written text; but on the other hand, pictorial rug is not entirely a copy of the Haftpeykar and did not seek to repeat it. Rather, the pictorial rug (host text) creatively took the written text (guest text) and recreated it in its own way. In other words, Bahrām in Seven Domes rug received Haftpeykar and then reproduced it.
In conclusion, in this research, the visual text (pictorial rug) is an allusive and creative text. One of the important reasons that can be used to emphasize that the “Bahram in the Seven Domes” rug is a creative text and it didn’t try to imitate the Haftpeykar in all details, is the conscious selection of three red, white and turquoise domes among the seven domes which are mentioned in Haftpeykar. The reasons for choosing these three domes are not clear to the author, but it can be said that the designer of the carpet was faithful to the written text and the general narrative of the story, but he made a conscious choice and included only three of the seven domes in the pictorial rug (Visual Text), while he could use all the seven domes.
The research results showed that only in the description of people and events there is an ekphrastic communication between the written text (Haftpeykar) and the pictorial rug. Also, in examining of the actual or notional ekphrasis, it showed that only the character of Bahram Sassani and the Princess are belonging to the field of actual ekphrasis. All other descriptions belong to the field of notional ekphrasis.


Main Subjects

  1. ابراهیمی، مرضیه (1394)، بررسی رابطه‌ی تصویر و کلمه در نگاره‌های مکتب هرات تیموری و رمان «نام من سرخ». کارشناسی‌ارشد، دانشکده هنر و معماری، دانشگاه مازندران. URL:https://ganj.irandoc.ac.ir/#/articles/7aca3f76a81710c9d48ff0172892b838/fulltext .
  2. افضلی، پویا (1393). اکفراسیس، تهران: چشمه.
  3.  پروانه‌پور، مجید و بینای مطلق، سعید (1397). تمایز معنای فلسفی بلاغی دو اصطلاح انارگیا و انرگیا و اهمیت آن برای فهم اکفراسیس در مطالعات کلمه-تصویر. نشریه شناخت، 11 (79)، 16 -37. URL:https://kj.sbu.ac.ir/article_98017_03792f1c616508af9cfc053f4ca495f3.pdf .
  4. پیرنیا، محمدکریم (1387). سبک‌شناسی معماری ایرانی، تهران: سروش دانش.
  5.  پیرنیا، محمدکریم (1392). آشنایی با معماری اسلامی ایران، تهران: نغمه نواندیش.
  6.  ذوالفقاری، حسن (1385). یک داستان و چهار روایت مقایسه داستان بهرام گور در شکارگاه در چهار منظومه. پژوهش‌های ادبی، 14، 31 - 52.
  7.  ژوله، تورج (1390). پژوهشی در فرش ایران، چاپ اول. تهران: یساولی.
  8.  مرادی، مهدی و کلاه‌کج، منصور (1401)، اکفراسیس در نقاشی‌محمودخان صبا (ملک‌الشعراء). رهپویه هنر، 5(1)، 51-59. https://doi.org/10.22034/ra.2022.535638.1086 .
  9. ملول، غلامعلی (1384). بهارستان: دریچه‌ای به قالی ایران، ترجمه سیمیندخت دهقانی، تهران: زرین و سیمین.
  10.  نامور مطلق، بهمن (1395). بینامتنیت: از ساختارگرایی تا پسامدرنیسم، تهران: انتشارات سخن.
  11.  نظامی، گنجوی (1934)، هفت پیکر گردآوری ریتز و ریپکا، استانبول: مطعبه دولت.
  12. هاتفی، محمد (1401)، تحلیل بینانشانه‌ای نقاشی اکفراستیک «تقدیر» از مهدی زمانی. نشریه پژوهش‌های زبان‌شناسی، 14(26)، 48-25. https://doi.org/10.22108/jrl.2022.134040.1663 13
  13. Cariboni Killander, C., Lutas, L., & Strukelj, A (2014). A New Look on Ekphrasis : an Eye-tracking Experiment on a Cinematic Example. Ekphrasis. Images, Cinema, Theatre. Media, 12(2), 10-31 URL:https://www.ekphrasisjournal.ro/docs/R1/E12-2.pdf
  14.  Krieger, Murray (2019). Ekphrasis : The Illusion of the Natural Sign. Johns Hopkins University Press. https://doi.org/10.1353/book.68495.
  15.  Pop, Doru (2008). For an Ekphrastic Poetics of Visual Arts and Representation. Visual Anthropology Research and the Cinema of Reality. URL:https://www.ekphrasisjournal.ro/docs/R1/01E1.pdf.
  16. Sager, Mareike Laura (2006). Writing and filming the painting: Ekphrasis in Literature and film. The University of Texas at Austin. URL:http://hdl.handle.net/2152/3527 .
  17. Spitzer, Leo (1962). The ‘Ode on a Grecian Urn’ or Content vs. Metagrammar. Essays on English and American Literature, Ed. Anna Hatcher, Princeton: Princeton UP, 67-97. https://doi.org/10.2307/1768227
  18.  Webb, Ruth (1999). Ekphrasis Ancient and Modern: The Invention of a Genre. Words & Image,15.1, 7-18. DOI:https://doi.org/10.1080/02666286.1999.10443970
  19.  William H. Race (1993). Ekphrasis,” The New Princeton Encyclopedia of Poetry and Poetics, eds. Alex Preminger and T.V.F. Brogan (Princeton, NJ: Princeton UP).
  20.  https://www.brooklynmuseum.org/opencollection/objects/46233
  21. https://gulbenkian.pt/museu/en/works_museu/miniature-from-the-anthology-of-sultan-iskandar/