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A Visit To The Met: Art of the Arab Lands, Turkey, Iran, Central Asia, and Later South Asia  

11/10/2011

Tuesday's weather was so nice it seems a good idea to go for a walk that ended up in the brand spanking new . The galleries are spectacular!. I was really interested in seeing carvings and surface decorations. I was not disappointed. At the entrance of the exhibition is a large Qur'an holder. From Iran or Central Asia, dated 1360 it is of the same exact design of the book holder that Roy Underhill and Popular Woodworking explained how to make in the Feburary 2011 issue. However this one is floorstanding and covered with amazing carvings.
Here is another picture showing some slightly out of focus carvings that cover the base of the holder. In addition to work from all over the region the exhibit also covers Arabic influences on design and this detail (last photo) of a 16th century Spanish box, inlaid with ivory decorations gives a small taste of the amazing stuff they have on exhibit. The entire exhibit is wonderfully mounted and expressively lit. There are a couple of rooms that are just jaw-dropping and I know I need a bunch of repeat visits to understand what I saw. Some of the pottery was great, but the carvings and metalwork really standout.
Tags:Woodworking Tools and Techniques,Historical Subjects
Comments: 5
11/10/2011SFPaul 
This and the upcoming Duncan Phyfe exhibit are on my too see list the next time we visit my girlfriend's parents in NYC.
11/10/2011Rusty Burwell 
I spent the 'snow saturday' a couple of weeks ago in the new galleries. Incredible! In addition to the standout pieces you mention, there is a north African courtyard, built for the space by native artisans that not only shows the wonderful tile work you would expect, but includes some great wooden panels and a carved wooden roof overhang. Best of all, there is a video monitor right there where you can watch the artisans at work doing the building and carving. Amazing.
11/10/2011Mitch Wilson 
Oh, man. This just might get me to come down and visit the city again for the first time in over a decade. Thanks, Joel.
11/16/2011Eric R 
That carving on the book stand is really something!
Next time I'm in New York, I'm going to make a visit there!
Thanks Joel.
01/06/2012Mark 
I got a chance to see this exhibit a few weeks ago when I was in town visiting family. The stand was impressive, but I loved the box too. Particularly the touch of painting the inlay pattern on the hinges, which I found interesting. The little courtyard they built next to the box display was also impressive.
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The opinions expressed in this blog are those of the blog's author and guests and in no way reflect the views of Tools for Working Wood.
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