The Age of Sinan: Architectural Culture in the Ottoman Empire

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9781861892539: The Age of Sinan: Architectural Culture in the Ottoman Empire

Mimar Koca Sinan (1489–1588), the most celebrated of all Ottoman Empire architects, is particularly renowned for his contributions to the cityscape of Istanbul. During his fifty-year career he designed hundreds of buildings, and his distinctive architectural idiom left its imprint on the terrain of a vast empire extending from the Danube to the Tigris.

Sinan’s mosques are considered among his best work, and with their light-filled centralized domes, remain a testament to his inventive spirit and passion for experimentation. In this major study of Sinan’s extraordinary buildings, Gülru Necipoglu argues that Sinan’s rich variety of mosque designs sprang from a process of negotiation between the architect and his patrons, rather than from unrestrained formal experimentation. Using primary source material, Necipoglu describes how Sinan created a layered system of mosque types, reflecting social status and territorial rank.

“Brushing aside skewed orientalist and nationalist readings which have colored many previous studies of his work, the author, using original documentation, provides the most detailed written study ever, of not only Sinan’s architecture, but also, arguably, of Ottoman culture, politics and society in the classical age  . . . Without question, The Age of Sinan is one of the most remarkable architectural biographies ever written and the book Sinan’s life and work richly deserves.”—Prospect

“The effort that has gone into the research and compilation of this publication is remarkable . . . an essential text for anyone with a serious interest in architecture.” —Architectural Review

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"An historical and sociological tour de force, this book is written--and written very well--with authority, skill, and grace. The scholarship is of the highest order. Gülru Necipoglu is simply the most technically accomplished, historically minded, and most important historian of Islamic art working today. This book will become the definitive study of Sinan--and of his age in cultural production."--Cornell H. Fleischer, University of Chicago, author of Bureaucrat and Intellectual in the Ottoman Empire: The Historian Mustafa Ali (1541-1600)


About the Author:

Gülru Necipoglu is the Aga Khan Professor of Islamic Art and Architecture in the Department of History of Art and Architecture at Harvard University. She is the editor of Muqarnas: An Annual of Islamic Visual Culture.

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Gulru Necipoglu
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Book Description Reaktion Books, United Kingdom, 2010. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Language: English . Brand New Book. Mimar Koca Sinan (c. 1489 1588), the Great Architect Sinan , was appointed chief royal architect to the Ottoman court by Sultan Suleyman I in 1539. During his fifty-year career he designed and constructed hundreds of buildings including mosques, palaces, harems, chapels, tombs, schools, almshouses, madrassahs, caravanserais, granaries, fountains, aqueducts and hospitals. His distinctive architectural idiom also left its imprint over the terrains of a vast empire extending from the Danube to the Tigris, and he became the most celebrated of all Ottoman architects, particularly renowned for his influence on the cityscape of Istanbul. Sinan s most influential buildings were his mosque complexes, where his inventive experimentation with light-filled centralized domes, often compared with parallel developments in Renaissance Italy, produced spaces in which the central dome appeared weightless and the interior surfaces bathed in light. In this monumental new study, Gulru Necipoglu argues that Sinan s rich variety of mosque designs sprang from a process of negotiation between the architect and his patrons, rather than from unrestrained formal experimentation as has been previously described. The author is the first to use published and unpublished primary sources to illuminate the cultural setting in which Sinan s monuments were produced, received and experienced. The author describes how Sinan created a layered system of mosque types, reflecting social status and territorial rank, shaped by ideas of identity, memory and decorum. Seen from this perspective, Sinan s works, with their highly standardized pattern of forms, used in ingeniously varied combinations, acquire dimensions of meaning that have not been previously recognized. Bookseller Inventory # AA99781861892539

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Gulru Necipoglu
Published by Reaktion Books, United Kingdom (2010)
ISBN 10: 1861892535 ISBN 13: 9781861892539
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Book Description Reaktion Books, United Kingdom, 2010. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Language: English . Brand New Book. Mimar Koca Sinan (c. 1489 1588), the Great Architect Sinan , was appointed chief royal architect to the Ottoman court by Sultan Suleyman I in 1539. During his fifty-year career he designed and constructed hundreds of buildings including mosques, palaces, harems, chapels, tombs, schools, almshouses, madrassahs, caravanserais, granaries, fountains, aqueducts and hospitals. His distinctive architectural idiom also left its imprint over the terrains of a vast empire extending from the Danube to the Tigris, and he became the most celebrated of all Ottoman architects, particularly renowned for his influence on the cityscape of Istanbul. Sinan s most influential buildings were his mosque complexes, where his inventive experimentation with light-filled centralized domes, often compared with parallel developments in Renaissance Italy, produced spaces in which the central dome appeared weightless and the interior surfaces bathed in light. In this monumental new study, Gulru Necipoglu argues that Sinan s rich variety of mosque designs sprang from a process of negotiation between the architect and his patrons, rather than from unrestrained formal experimentation as has been previously described. The author is the first to use published and unpublished primary sources to illuminate the cultural setting in which Sinan s monuments were produced, received and experienced. The author describes how Sinan created a layered system of mosque types, reflecting social status and territorial rank, shaped by ideas of identity, memory and decorum. Seen from this perspective, Sinan s works, with their highly standardized pattern of forms, used in ingeniously varied combinations, acquire dimensions of meaning that have not been previously recognized. Bookseller Inventory # AA99781861892539

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