Middle Eastern Art
Islamic Geometric Patterns
Paperback ISBN: 0500294682
Eschewing modern technology such as protractors and calculators, Broug explores how Islamic artists of the past designed the geometric patterns that are so characteristic of Islamic art and architecture. In a step-by-step guide, he shows how they were able to create such intricate designs hundreds of years ago with only a ruler and compass. Readers should be able to apply many of the skills and insights in many and varied areas of design and art, he says. Annotation
An Analytical and Cosmological Approach
Paperback ISBN: 0892818034
â€¢ The classic study of the cosmological principles found in the patterns of Islamic art and how they relate to sacred geometry and the perennial philosophy. â€¢ 150 color and black-and-white drawings of Islamic patterns. â€¢ Explains how these patterns guide the mind from the mundane world of appearances to its underlying reality. For centuries the nature and meaning of Islamic art has been wrongly regarded in the West as mere decoration. In truth, because the portrayal of human and animal forms has always been discouraged on Islamic religious principles that forbid idolatry, the abstract art of Islam represents the sophisticated development of a nonnaturalistic tradition. Through this tradition, Islamic art has maintained its chief aim: the affirmation of unity as expressed in diversity. In this fascinating study the author explores the idea that unlike medieval Christian art, in which the polarization of such forms and patterns was relegated to a background against which to set sacred images, the geometrical patterns of Islamic art can reveal the intrinsic cosmological laws affecting all creation. Their primary function is to guide the mind from the mundane world of appearances toward its underlying reality. Numerous drawings connect the art of Islam to the Pythagorean science of mathematics, and through these images we can see how an Earth-centered view of the cosmos provides renewed significance to those number patterns produced by the orbits of the planets. The author shows the essential philosophical and practical basis of every art creation--whether a tile, carpet, or wall--and how this use of mathematical tessellations affirms the essential unity of all things. An invaluable study for all those interested in sacred art, Islamic Patterns is also a rich source of inspiration for artists and designers.
Lapis and Gold
Exploring Chester Beatty’s Ruzbihan Qur’an
Hardcover ISBN: 1912168049
The Chester Beatty Library’s 16th-century Ruzbihan Qur’an—produced in the city of Shiraz in southwest Iran—is one of the finest Islamic manuscripts known. In terms of both materials and workmanship, it is exquisite: lapis lazuli and gold, the two most expensive pigments available, are used on every page, while the rendering of the decoration is exceptionally fine. This is the most detailed and comprehensive study of any Islamic manuscript—and it is well worthy of such scrutiny. Praised in a 16th-century account as one of the finest calligraphers of his time, Ruzbihan Muhammad al-Tab‘i al-Shirazi would have produced numerous Qur’ans during the course of his career, but only five signed by him have survived. Much of the study of this, surely his finest manuscript, is focussed on understanding the processes and procedures involved in the production of the manuscript and thus on gaining an insight into the problems faced by Ruzbihan and the other artists and how they resolved them. Certain surprising and never-before-seen techniques of production and ‘tricks-of-the trade’ have been uncovered. A large portion of the information presented is the result of very close examination, under high magnification, of the manuscript’s 445 folios (890 pages). Many of the reproductions included are of minute details of the decoration that are difficult, or even impossible, to see with the unaided eye. The book follows the order in which work on the manuscript would have progressed, beginning with an examination of Ruzbihan’s calligraphy, the various scripts he used to copy the text and the problems he faced, such as the spacing of the text and his errors and omissions. Additions, such as marginal notations, recitation marks and decorative devices indicating the divisions of the text, all of which guide the reciter in his reading of the Qur’an, are also considered. Although the manuscript’s renown has traditionally rested with the name of its calligrapher, it is equally the quality, extent, diversity and complexity of its superb decorative program—the work of a team of highly skilled, yet anonymous artists and artisans—that sets the manuscript apart from most other 16th-century Persian Qur’ans. Fittingly, therefore, the bulk of the study focuses on this aspect of the manuscript. Major aspects of the illumination, such as its lavish beginning, middle and end illuminations, are examined as well as more minor elements such as the ‘rays’ that emerge from the frontis- and finispiece; even the tiniest of details are revealed, such as what are, in the book, termed ‘squiggles and eyes’, hidden amongst the illuminations and a challenge to find for the even the most eagle-eyed viewer. However, while many of the secrets of the production of the manuscript were revealed, many mysteries remain. Chief among these is the startling change in aesthetic evident in the illuminations of the final ten openings of the manuscript. Why such as change was undertaken—and then halted—is not known. As was increasingly revealed as study of the manuscript progressed—and as the reader of the book will quickly come to realize—Chester Beatty’s Ruzbihan Qur’an is an intriguing and very special manuscript.
THe Minbar of Saladin
Reconstructing a Jewel of Islamic Art
Hardcover ISBN: 050023843x
This is the remarkable story of one of the masterpieces of Islamic art, the Minbar of Saladin. Made in the middle of the 12th century, this wooden pulpit, perhaps the finest ever seen, stood in the al-Aqsa Mosque in Jerusalem for some eight hundred years until it was burned down in 1969 by a tourist claiming to be acting on orders from God. Its loss to the Muslim world was immense, and so the decision was taken by the mosque's guardians, the Jordanian royal family, to rebuild it.
Modern Art in the Arab World
Paperback ISBN: 1633450384
Modern Art in the Arab World: Primary Documents offers an unprecedented resource for the study of modernism: a compendium of critical art writings by twentieth-century Arab intellectuals and artists. The selection of texts—many of which appear here for the first time in English—includes manifestos, essays, transcripts of roundtable discussions, diary entries, exhibition guest-book comments, letters, and more. Traversing empires and nation-states, diasporas and speculative cultural and political federations, these documents bring light to the formation of a global modernism, through debates on originality, public space, spiritualism and art, postcolonial exhibition politics, and Arab nationalism, among many other topics. The collection is framed chronologically, and includes contextualizing commentaries to assist readers in navigating its broad geographic and historical scope. Interspersed throughout the volume are sixteen contemporary essays: writings by scholars on key terms and events as well as personal reflections by modern artists who were themselves active in the histories under consideration. A newly commissioned essay by historian and Arab-studies scholar Ussama Makdisi provides a historical overview of the region’s intertwined political and cultural developments during the twentieth century. Modern Art in the Arab World is an essential addition to the investigation of modernism and its global manifestations. Publication of the Museum of Modern Art Distributed by Duke University Press
Splendors of Islam
Hardcover ISBN: 0847860353
One of the most important and authoritative books to celebrate mosque architecture and Islamic design, featuring many new photographs commissioned for this volume. Mosques are among the greatest architectural feats and have a profound beauty: their spiritual purpose adds to their mystery and luster. This visually stunning volume illustrates the development of the basic mosque structural and decorative elements through sixty examples—including the most venerated, such as the Great Mosque of Córdoba, Spain; the Imam Mosque of Isfahan, Iran; and Istanbul’s Süleymaniye Mosque—along with such innovative new expressions as Doha’s Abu al-Qabib Mosque. Mosques from Europe, the Indian subcontinent, North America, North Africa and the sub-Sahara, the Middle East, and Russia and the Caucasus are showcased, from their origins in Mecca and Medina through their major stylistic transformations under the Ottoman, Safavid, and Mughal empires up to the present. Stunning original and archival photographs show striking exterior and interior views as well as adjacent gardens and fountains that grace these magnificent structures. Essays by prominent architecture and design authorities cover topics such as the iconographic and decorative elements of the mosque, including the calligraphy and tilework that adorn these important sanctuaries, as well as regional architecture styles. This important volume is a must for those interested in architecture and design, as well as lovers of Islamic art.
Obaidi in Conversation With Hans Ulrich Obrist
Hardcover ISBN: 8836635121
Alhambra Ceiling - Foiled Journal
Hardcover ISBN: 1786641488
Part of a series of exciting and luxurious Flame Tree Notebooks. Combining high-quality production with magnificent fine art, the covers are printed on foil in five colours, embossed, then foil stamped. And theyêre powerfully practical: a pocket at the back for receipts and scraps, two bookmarks and a solid magnetic side flap.
Paperback ISBN: 1861892594
Turmoil and violence have defined the lives of Palestinian people over the last few decades, yet in the midst of the chaos artists live and thrive, creating little-seen work that is a powerful response to their situation. Gannit Ankori's Palestinian Art is the first in-depth English-language assessment of contemporary Palestinian art, and it offers an unprecedented and wholly original overview of this art in all its complexity. Ankori comprehensively traces the full history and development of Palestinian art, from its roots in folk art and traditional Christian and Islamic painting to the predominance of nationalistic themes and diverse media used today. Drawing on over a decade of extensive research, studio visits, and interviews, Ankori explores the vast oeuvre of prominent contemporary Palestinian artists, navigating between the personal and biographical dimensions of specific artworks and the symbolic meanings embedded within them. She provides detailed interpretations of many works and considers the complex historical, geographical, political, and cultural contexts in which the art was created. Questions of gender, exile, colonialism, postcolonialism, and hybridity are integral to Ankori's investigation as she probes the influence and thematic dominance of issues such as rootedness and displacement in Palestinian art. Palestinian Art is a fascinating introduction to a virtually unknown visual culture that has been subsumed under the torrent of current political turmoil. A groundbreaking and essential work of art scholarship, Palestinian Art illuminates new and unique facets of the Palestinian cultural identity.