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Posts Tagged ‘Persian Art’

The ceiling of the Ali Qapu Palace is located in Isfahan, Iran and is one of the many wonders in a new book of Persian Art & Architecture. “The people of Isfahan in central Iran are famously proud. ‘Isfahan,’ a saying among them goes, ‘is half the world.’ The city dates back 2,500 years, but its golden age was the 16th century, when Shah Abbas moved the capital of his Safavid dynasty there. Isfahan emerged as a center of commerce, learning and architecture—this last is exemplified by the Shah Mosque, with its dual pairs of minarets and famous blue dome adorned with some of the most complex tilework and calligraphy in the Islamic world. The Ali Qapu Palace, built for Shah Abbas, is another wonder, decorated from top to bottom in patterns, both figurative and abstract. The bottle-shaped holes in the arched stucco ceiling of its music room (above) functioned to improve acoustics, like the opening in a violin. The intricate red, gold and blue designs on the ceiling recall those of Persian miniature paintings, while the interlacing octagonal and hexadecagonal shapes that structure it are quintessential motifs in Islamic art.”

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