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The Art And Architecture of Islamic Cairo

av Richard Yeomans

MedlemmarRecensionerPopularitetGenomsnittligt betygDiskussioner
1311,215,183 (4)Ingen/inga
Since Napoleon's invasion of Egypt in 1798, the western traveller has been obsessed with the Pharaohs and Egypt's ancient past. Her Islamic culture has been largely ignored, and the pyramids have been allowed to cast a long shadow over the visual culture of Islamic Cairo, obscuring a magnificent art and architectural heritage that has lasted over a thousand years, from the building of the Mosque of Amr in the 7th century to that of Muhammad Ali in the 19th century. Cairo is full of masterpieces of medieval art and architecture, reflecting the status of Egypt as the center of several significant Muslim empires. This book redresses the cultural balance and examines the art and architectural treasures of Cairo from the Arab to the Ottoman conquests (642-1517). Set within an historical narrative, the stylistic development of the visual arts is explained within changing religious, social, and political contexts. Examples of the decorative arts-ceramics, glass, woodwork, metalwork, textiles, and manuscripts-are examined from the Museum of Islamic Art, Cairo, and other major collections in Europe and the USA. Architecture and the decorative arts are dealt with separately with detailed descriptions, illustrating how the story of Islamic art and architecture is one of continuing adaptation and change. By concentrating on Cairo's Islamic art and architecture, the author has created a study of Islamic style which is unprecedented in its historical scope. Fully illustrated with over200 vivid photographs, plans, and elevations and a comprehensive glossary of architectural terms, this book will be essential reading for architects, designers, historians, and anyone with an appreciation of one of the world's finest and richest architectural legacies, tragically under threat.… (mer)
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bookshelves: published-2006, under-10-ratings, winter-20132014, nonfiction, giftee, art-forms, e-book, afr-egypt, tbr-busting-2014, history, architecture, skim-through
Read on January 04, 2014


Opening: CHAPTER ONE
Umayyad and Tulunid
Architecture: Fustat and
al-Qata’i

When the Arabs entered Alexandria they were overwhelmed by its architectural splendour. Amr sent a letter full of hyperbole to Omar stating that he had ‘captured a city from the description of which I shall refrain. Suffice it to say that I have seized therein a city of 4,000 villas with 4,000 baths, 40,000 poll tax paying Jews and 400 places of entertainment for royalty.’ The figures are grossly overstated but the letter expresses something of the opulence and brilliance of the city reported in other Arab sources. It was the jewel in the crown of conquest, and Amr, finding a number of deserted villas and palaces, was tempted to make it his seat of government.

Umayyad and Tulunid Architecture

Nilometer

From the start of Chapter Two, Fatimid Architecture: With the rise of the Fatimid empire in North Africa (909), the government of Baghdad began to realize that Egypt’s weakness was not in its interests. It needed a strong bulwark against the Fatimid threat, and accepted that in order to achieve this Egypt needed a degree of autonomy under a strong ruler. In 935 the country was rescued from a state of anarchy with the appointment of Muhammad ibn Tughj as governor.

Mosque of al-Azhar

A lush, in-depth book that I have skimmed for the moment, with a proviso to re-visit these pages before our next trip. ( )
  mimal | Jan 4, 2014 |
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Since Napoleon's invasion of Egypt in 1798, the western traveller has been obsessed with the Pharaohs and Egypt's ancient past. Her Islamic culture has been largely ignored, and the pyramids have been allowed to cast a long shadow over the visual culture of Islamic Cairo, obscuring a magnificent art and architectural heritage that has lasted over a thousand years, from the building of the Mosque of Amr in the 7th century to that of Muhammad Ali in the 19th century. Cairo is full of masterpieces of medieval art and architecture, reflecting the status of Egypt as the center of several significant Muslim empires. This book redresses the cultural balance and examines the art and architectural treasures of Cairo from the Arab to the Ottoman conquests (642-1517). Set within an historical narrative, the stylistic development of the visual arts is explained within changing religious, social, and political contexts. Examples of the decorative arts-ceramics, glass, woodwork, metalwork, textiles, and manuscripts-are examined from the Museum of Islamic Art, Cairo, and other major collections in Europe and the USA. Architecture and the decorative arts are dealt with separately with detailed descriptions, illustrating how the story of Islamic art and architecture is one of continuing adaptation and change. By concentrating on Cairo's Islamic art and architecture, the author has created a study of Islamic style which is unprecedented in its historical scope. Fully illustrated with over200 vivid photographs, plans, and elevations and a comprehensive glossary of architectural terms, this book will be essential reading for architects, designers, historians, and anyone with an appreciation of one of the world's finest and richest architectural legacies, tragically under threat.

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