A magnificent drawing in Arabic script represents four lions, joined together in one head and forming a vertical symmetry. Each zoomorphic form is composed of Arabic script in red, black and green, with the two lions on the left-hand side being mirror scripts. All the colour lines of the script are additionally formed of micrography – a miniature script, forming the letters.
Each lion is composed of a sign:
و الله علي بن أبى طالب الغالب رضيا الله تعالى عنه وكرم الله وجهه
Which can be vaguely translated to: And may Allah be pleased with Ali ibn Abi Talib, may Allah bless him, noble Allah and his Face.
The lions represent Ali ibn Abi Talib (the son of Abi Talib), the son-in-law and cousin of Muhammad. Muhammad named Ali Asadullāh, meaning "Lion of God”. Another name for Ali is Haydar ( حي در ), meaning again “Lion”.
The motif is popular in the art of the Shia Muslims, who believe, that Ali is the rightful immediate successor to Muhammad. The calligraphy was possibly made in the south-eastern part of the Ottoman Empire, in the area of today’s south Iraq.
The drawing combines the micrography, symmetry, calligraphy and mirror script – the characteristics, which were perfected by the Islamic Art.