Cosmophilia: Islamic Art from the David Collection, Copenhagen

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9781892850119: Cosmophilia: Islamic Art from the David Collection, Copenhagen

With a history spanning some fourteen centuries, Islamic art is one of the world’s great artistic traditions, although it largely eschews such familiar art forms as painting on canvas and monumental sculpture. Cosmophilia is the catalog of an exhibition of 123 examples of the finest examples of Islamic art from the C. L. David Collection in Copenhagen, Denmark shown in 2006 at the McMullen Museum at Boston College and soon to travel to the Smart Museum at the University of Chicago. These beguiling works from Spain, West Africa, China, and Indonesia include ornamental textiles, calligraphy, book-painting, ceramics, and inlaid wood.

An introductory essay by cocurators Sheila S. Blair and Jonathan M. Bloom that explores the nature and meaning of ornament in Islamic art accompanies this lavishly illustrated catalog. In addition to their in-depth discussion of the collection, Blair and Bloom reveal how Islamic artists incorporate figural ornament, written text, geometry, and even vegetation in their designs. The resulting volume will thrill anyone interested in the distinctive beauty of Islamic art.

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About the Author:

Sheila S. Blair and Jonathan M. Bloom share the Norma Jean Calderwood University Professorship of Islamic and Asian Art at Boston College as well as the Hamad bin Khalifa Chair of Islamic Art at Virginia Commonwealth University. Together and independently they are the authors of numerous books, including their joint work, The Art and Architecture of Islam: 1250–1800, which was a New York Times Notable Book.  

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