Pub. Date:
Edinburgh University Press
The Iconography of Islamic Art

The Iconography of Islamic Art

by Bernard O'Kane
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People have been searching for meaning in Islamic art for centuries. Newly available in paperback, this book explores the iconography of Islamic art, presenting a diverse range of approaches to the subject. Despite this variety, there is an overarching theme: the linking of the interpretation of objects to textual sources. This results in a collection of in-depth studies of motifs as diverse as the peacock, trees, and the figure holding a cup and branch. In addition, new interpretations are presented of other objects, such as an Abuyyid metal basin or Mongol paintings. Textual sources on the Ka'ba or the use of marble provide a starting point for the examination of objects and their relationship to history. The architectural decoration of monuments from Egypt to India is analysed, and Arab and Safavid paintings are mined for meaning. Links with Christian elements in Sicily or Buddhist stupas are appraised. Generously illustrated throughout, this book will appeal to all those with an interest in Islamic art, architecture and iconography.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780748620906
Publisher: Edinburgh University Press
Publication date: 06/01/2005
Pages: 352
Product dimensions: 7.40(w) x 9.70(h) x 1.00(d)

About the Author

Bernard O'Kane is Professor of Islamic Art and Architecture at the American University in Cairo.

Table of Contents


List of Illustrations

1. Birds and Blessings: A Kohl-Pot from Jerusalem, Sylvia Auld
2. Remarks on the Iconography of the Medieval Capitals of Cairo: Form and Emplacement, Marianne Barrucand
3. A Mongol Envoy, Sheila S. Blair
4. Almoravid Geometric Designs in the Pavement of the Cappella Palatina in Palermo, Jonathan M. Bloom
5. A Kingly Posture: The Iconography of Sultan Husayn Bayqara, Barbara Brend
6. Musical Beasts: The Swan-Pheonix in the Ibn Bakhtishu' Bestiaries; Anna Contadini
7. Cup, Branch, Bird and Fish: An Iconographical Study of the Figure Holding a Cup and a Branch Flanked by a Bird and a Fish; Abbas Daneshvari
8. Islamic Incense Burners and the Influence of Buddhist Art; Geza Fehervari
9. Vine Ornament and Pomegranates as Palace Decoration in 'Anjar; Barbara Finster
10. Persianate Trends in Sultanate Architecture: The Great Mosque of Bada'un; Finbarr Barry Flood
11. Silks, Pots and Jugs: Al-Jahiz and Objects of Common Use; Oleg Grabar
12. Khusrau Parviz as Champion of Shi'ism? A Closer Look at Early Safavid Miniature Painting in the Royal Museum of Edinburgh; Ulrike al-Khamis
13. 'Waves of the Sea': Responses to Marble in Written Sources (9th-15th Century); Marcus Milwright
14. The Arboreal Aesthetic: Landscape, Painting and Architecture from Mongol Iran to Mamluk Egypt; Bernard O'Kane
15. The Vicissitudes of Rustam; B. W. Robinson
16. Made for the Show: The Medieval Treasury of the Ka'ba in Mecca; Avinoam Shalem
17. A Pictorial Representation of the Hadith al-Thaqalayn in an Ilkhanid Copy of Bal'ami's Tarjuma-yi Tabari in the Freer Gallery; Raya Y. Shani
18. Style versus Substance: the Christian Iconography on Two Vessels Made for the Ayyubid Sultan al-Salih Ayyub; Rachel Ward

Bibliography of Robert Hillenbrand's works.

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