Produced for the Association Internationale de Bibliophilie, this book traces the development of the early Ottoman style under influence from their neighbours; the impact of the patronage of Sultan Mehmed the Conqueror; and the development of the ‘classical’ style under his successor Bayezid II. A catalogue section provides beautiful illustrations of 41 masterpieces of bookbinding; with technical appendices, bibliography, concordance and index. More
Accompanies an exhibition at Sam Fogg during the city-wide event Asian Art In London (3–12 November 2016)
A Library of Manuscripts from India
Paperback, 300 x 245 mm 72 pages, 95 colour illus.
ISBN: 978 1 911300 12 0
Sam Fogg and Andrew Butler-Wheelhouse
This beautiful collection of illustrated manuscripts takes the reader on a visual journey through great epics, charged romances and colourful cautionary tales from the Indian subcontinent of the 16th to 20th centuries.
The rich variety of languages, religious traditions and schools of art of the Indian subcontinent are brought together in this exceptional library of Indian manuscripts. Religious and philosophical texts from Buddhist, Hindu, Islamic, Jain, Sikh and Zoroastrian schools of thought are all represented in illustrated manuscripts. This library shows how these various faiths borrowed, interacted and influenced one another in the subcontinent. From palm leaf manuscripts of the South to pothi format manuals from the Himalayas in Nepal, to the sophisticated and highly illustrated manuscripts of the Imperial Moghul court, this catalogue takes the reader on a visual journey through great epics, charged romances and colourful cautionary tales.
Highlights include an important and lavishly illustrated palm-leaf manuscript by ‘The Emperor of Poets’, Upendra Bhanja (c. 1640–1740 ce), and a rare Bihar-i Danesh (The Springtime of Knowledge) by Shaikh ‘Inayatallah Kamboh of Delhi, from late 17th/early 18th century – the finest known copy of the manuscript. An exceptional album of 18th-century Indian paintings from the Liechtenstein Princely Collections offers insight into the fascination for Indian courtly life among the nobility of Europe.
A number of exceptional painted scrolls are also presented here. Scroll painting has a long history in India. Story tellers would travel from village to village giving performances of well-known epics and regional stories often accompanied by musicians and with the visual aid of a painted scroll. One particularly vibrant scroll, over 15 metres in length, of the Madel Puranamu, was probably commissioned by a wealthy member of the dhobi caste to celebrate his community’s origins and favour with Shiva.
Among the many intruiging maps and manuals – on art, astrology, omens, divination and auspicious symbols – is an 18th-century Nepalese sorcer’s manual, which contains instructions for protective and exorcistic Shaiva rituals, mantras and sacrificial blood-offerings. Its binding includes feathers and traces of blood and skin, which by tradition are fragments of the ‘five beasts’ – buffalo, chicken, dog, goat and cow.
The selection consists of Qur’ans, illustrated Islamic manuscripts and scientific and religious manuscripts. All are handsomely illustrated and fully discussed. The manuscripts are from all parts of the Islamic world and represent the finest achievements of the form. More
The outstanding Lygo Collection of Qur’an manuscripts, which date from around a century after the Prophet Muhammad’s death in 632 CE to the middle of the 16th century, includes pages from some of the most celebrated manuscripts of the period as well as lesser-known ones, and provide a comprehensive overview of stylistic developments in Qur’anic calligraphy and illumination. More
Given the status of the Qur‘an as the eternal and uncreated word of Allah, the art of the pen became the focus of an extraordinary energy in the Muslim world. Ink and Gold charts the development of Islamic calligraphy – the noblest, most stylized and original of the Islamic arts – over a period of some 1200 years, from its beginnings in the Arabian Peninsula. More
Amorous Delight: The Amarushataka Palm-Leaf Manuscript. Illustrated by the Master of Sharanakula in the 19th Century (Orissa, India)
Around 1800, an anonymous engraver in Sharanakula, a small temple place on the southern coast of Orissa, illustrated a palm-leaf anthology of love poems. The one hundred Sanskrit quatrains, which are said to be the work of the 7th-century poet Amaru, describe the behaviour of enamoured couples, their longing for each other, the lovers’ anxieties, their ecstatic joy as well as their doubts and sorrows. More
Illuminator, painter, scribe, clerk, teacher, doctor of theology, restorer and binder, Mesrop was one of the greatest Armenian artists of his and following generations. He was prolific, working for at least forty-two years in Sos (New Julfa) from 1608 to 1651. This book will be the first serious study of the 46 of his manuscripts that have survived. The focus of the book, however, is The Four Gospels, one of the few manuscripts painted entirely by Mesrop’s hand and one of the most extensively illuminated in his oeuvre. More