Sunday, May 22, 2011

Books on Islamic Architecture

Books on Islamic architecture:

Between Eden & Earth: Gardens of the Islamic World by Heba Nayel Barakat. A book that explores the history and philosophies behind the greatest Islamic gardens. In a visual journey through the colourful array of photographic images, the major surviving Islamic gardens are vividly brought to life, illustrating the glories of the past. Examined here are the splendours of the gardens of Spain, the marvels of Morocco, the courtyard gardens of Syria and Egypt, the enchantment of Ottoman Turkey and much more. This book was published in conjunction with a photography exhibition of the same name. With notes and bibliography.

Divine Inspiration: Seven Principles of Islamic Architecture edited by LucienDe Guise. Divine Inspiration explores the relationship between Muslims and their beliefs, manifested in the built environment. Just as Islam embodies a way of life and serves as a cohesive force amongst ethnically and culturally diverse peoples, it also contains a conspicuous aesthetic dimension. There is no essential difference between sacred and secular art in Islam. This allows Islamic architecture to symbolise the spiritual path of the religion, transcending the temporal considerations of form and function. Through the study of seven key religious beliefs, a cross-section of Islamic life and practice is united with the corresponding architectural principles. With bibliography.

Islamic Art: The Past and Modern by Nuzhat Kazmi. Islamic Art is a product of certain forceful factors that created a cultural milieu which was centred on the religious ethos and intellectual affinities inspired by Islam and its followers. This lavishly illustrated book looks at the artistic output of the Islamic civilization through the centuries, from the time of its inception to its interpretations in the contemporary world. The material is organised into: Art of Painting; Art of Calligraphy; Art of Carpet and Textile Weaving; Decorative Islamic Arts; Art of Architecture; Islamic Arts and the Modern World; and Major Dynasties.

Rethinking Islamic Architecture by Mohamad Tajuddin Mohamad Rasdi. Islamic architecture has never undergone a sustained period of self-criticism and creative renewal. Arguing in favour of a return to humility, humanism and the eternal values of Islam, the author shows a way out of the impasse in Islamic architecture by a close reading of the Islamic sources in tandem with a re-examination of the work of visionary Western modernists. With notes, bibliography and index.

Glory of the Sultans: Islamic Architecture in India by Yves Porter and Gerard Degeorge. This is a major volume on the built heritage of mosques and monuments from the Mughal period of Indo-Pakistani history. Photographs and architectural drawings are included in sections on: 1) the period from the 7th century Arab-Mughal incursions to the foundation of the Mughal Empire 1555; 2) the 14th to 17th-century period of independent sultanates; 3) the time of the Great Mughals, from Akbar (1556-1615) to Shah Zafar (1837-58). The last section notes Muslim and quasi-Muslim styled buildings of the British Imperial years with notes, bibliography and index of the monument.

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