Homepage English 2017-07-06T12:56:43+00:00
„Seeing one another“ ‒ Calligraphy as an aesthetic bridge in interreligious dialogue An interreligious art exhibition with calligraphies from the Torah, New Testament and Koran

Sacred Scriptures as a field for perception and spiritual experience

Shahid Alam, artist, Aachen

May 13 – July 9, 2017

Evangelische St. Thomaskirche
Mariannenplatz 28
10997 Berlin-Kreuzberg
(close to railway station east and not far away from the East side gallery)

Mon-Sat, 10 am-6 pm
Sun 11 am-6 pm (and by appointment)


Sensual, moving, an entrance door for interreligious encounters: the art of calligraphy.

„Seeing each other“ is not just the title of the exhibition, but its programme: to perceive oneself and others as well, seeing oneself in the others and taking a new look at oneself. Jewish, Christian and Muslim partners are cooperating in this interreligious exhibition of calligraphy, – a very important signal in the colourful and variegated city of Berlin. We can do something together – with joy, with respect and esteem, curious and full of pleasure in discovery. The art of calligraphy will reach people’s hearts and help to open up intercultural and interreligious encounters.

Shahid Alam has deliberately let himself get involved with the church setting and developed his exhibition – an exhibition for this special place, for Berlin, for the people of the neighbourhood, whether they are Christians, Muslims, Jews or non-religious. Accept the invitation and be charmed!

A comprehensive accompanying programme (concerts, lectures, podiums, calligraphy workshops) is to be found at www.einandersehen.de.


Sat 08.07. 20:00


»Einander sehen – Schrift als Klangraum«
Rezitationen aus jüdischer, christlicher und muslimischer Tradition
Musik: twinterpretation (Jan-Philipp und Anwar Manuel Alam, Violine und Klavier)

Sun 09.07. 10.00


»Einander sehen – die poetische Kraft des Wortes«
Mit Pfarrerin Friederike von Kirchbach, Dr. Andreas Goetze, Shahid Alam
Musik: twinterpretation



Shahid Alam was born in Lahore, Pakistan. Members of his family have been calligraphers for many generations. At an early age of four years, Alam himself began to write Arabic letters. At the Catholic Franciscans school in Lahore, he followed his ambition in the calligraphy course.

In 1973, Shahid Alam came to Germany to study pedagogy, art, politics and European science at the universities of Dortmund and Aachen. For twenty years he taught in several schools in Germany and Pakistan. Since 1996 he has been working as an artist in Stolberg, a city close to Aachen.

The art of calligraphy has a special meaning for Shahid Alam. He is fascinated by the great potential of the Arabic letters and the possibilities of innovation that they offer to a calligrapher.

After forty years of work as an artist he is still amazed by the complex options of joining different Arabic letters with each other. Letters get “married” to each other, losing their individual form to became part of a much wider picture, a new art, a sculpture of letters.

This unique art unites the mind, word and lettering to something completely new. With this graphic and atmospheric arrangement of the word-picture Alam creates works of extraordinary plasticity and visual power. And out of this well balanced picture he creates structural shapes.

The cultural and religious diversity of his homeland, Pakistan and the political and economical differences have a big influence on Shahid Alam’s life and work. With the beauty of Arabic calligraphy, Alam wants to support inter-cultural and inter-religious dialogue and encourage a way of mutual understanding.

Shahid Alam
Atelier Kunst und Kultur
Untere Donnerbergstr. 55 b
52222 Stolberg

Tel.: 02402-9738668
Mobil: 0151-52540903


Punkt. Ewigkeit.
»Ich bin das Alpha und das Omega, der Erste und der Letzte, der Anfang und das Ende.«
Jesus Christus. Offb. 22,13 (Kalligraphie auf Holz)

Fatiha – Die Eröffnende. Koransure
(Ölfarbe und Tinte auf Birkenholz, 80 x 60 cm)

Marias Empfängnis. Koransure 19:22
(Öl und Tusche auf Holz, 77 x 100 cm)

Das jüdische Morgengebet (nach Maimonides, 1135–1204)
(Tusche auf Karton, 80 x 60 cm)

»Gott ist das Licht der Himmel und der Erde«. Koransure 24:35
(Öl, Tinte und Tusche auf Holz, 100 x 80 cm)

»Gott ist das Licht der Himmel und der Erde«. Koransure 24:35
(Aquarell, 80 x 60 cm)

Das Alif. Der Anfang.
(Lindenholz, Höhe 200 cm)

Die 99 Namen Gottes


Like on a pilgrimage

Fundamentals for a dialogue of religions

By Dr. Andreas Goetze

In the multicultural and multi-religious Europe of the 21st century, it is no longer the question whether people of different cultural and religious backgrounds want to live together. Rather, they are living side by side, so that questions about how to carry out „a dialogue of life“ emerge clearly and urgently from concrete life experiences. The relationship of one’s own faith or conviction to other religions and worldviews must be determined and clarified. Seen from the perspective of these social developments, intercultural and interreligious competencies are a key qualification in order to deal with the profound changes in the religious and ideological situation in Europe. In this context, toleration of others means not merely mild indulgence or boundless acceptance, but the extremely demanding basic „dependency on one another“ (J. Margull), so that mutual respect and appreciation is the fundamental attitude for a „dialogue on the way“. This includes a good culture of dispute and an open debate about content.


Approaches to image and image prohibition in Judaism and Islam

By Dr. Andreas Goetze

We live in a world dominated by images, whether emotional or sensual, and that not only externally, for we are also constantly producing inner images. But images are ambiguous, multi-layered, and they can be manipulated and misused. I am quick to form a picture of another person in my own mind: “Typical, of course he had to say that …!” And that means I have pigeonholed the other person, faster than I would have imagined. This picture I have formed does not do him justice. He can act differently, but I have ignored that. My picture robs him of his future by defining him: “That is what you are like!” But all kinds of things are at stake: the reality of what is unknown, the freedom to establish what is unpredictable, the mystery of the person, and that which I will never be able to uncover.


Dr. Andreas Goetze
Chaplain in charge of inter-faith-dialogue (EKBO)

Ökumenisches Zentrum im Berliner Missionswerk
Georgenkirchstraße 69/70, 10249 Berlin, Germany

Phone: +49 30 243 44-167


For further information please visit



Evangelische St.-Thomas-Kirche
Mariannenplatz 28
10997 Berlin-Kreuzberg



Abraham Geiger Kolleg