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Article

Syrian, 13th century, male.

Metal worker.

Ahmad ibn Umar al Dhaki is thought to have come from Mosul, and had a famous workshop and numerous apprentices. Three leather objects, one in Cleveland Museum, one at the Louvre and one in a private collection in Switzerland, are signed by him and dated between ...

Article

Ajouré  

Gordon Campbell

French term for openwork, used in the decorative arts principally with reference to metalwork, bookbinding and heraldry. In metalwork, it denotes the piercing or perforation of sheet metal, a practice found as early as the ancient Egyptian period. In bookbinding, the term ajouré binding refers to a style that emerged in late 15th-century Venice in which bindings were embellished with pierced or translucent patterns, typically open designs of foliage. In heraldry, an ...

Article

J. M. Rogers

Arab metalworker. He is known from signatures on two undated inlaid wares, the Baptistère de St Louis (Paris, Louvre, LP 16, signed in six places) and the Vasselot Bowl (Paris, Louvre, MAO 331, signed once). His style is characterized by bold compositions of large figures encrusted with silver plaques on which details are elaborately chased. His repertory develops themes characteristic of later 13th-century metalwork from Mosul (...

Article

‛Ali  

S. J. Vernoit

Persian enamel painter. All of his work is associated with the patronage of the Qajar monarch Fath ‛Ali Shah (reg 1797–1834). ‛Ali signed his work with the title ghulām khānazād (‘slave born in the household’) signifying ‘artist in the royal service’. A jewelled nephrite dish (Vienna, Ksthist. Mus., Samml. Plastik & Kstgew., M3223) presented in ...

Article

Baqir  

Persian painter in enamels. All of his known work was made for the Qajar monarch Fath ‛Ali Shah (reg 1797–1834). Like ‛Ali, he signed his work with the title ghulām khānazād (‘slave born in the household’), signifying ‘artist in the royal service’. Baqir painted a fine gold bowl and cover, saucer and spoon, which is enamelled with astrological figures and a poetic dedication to Fath ‛Ali Shah (priv. col., see Robinson, ...

Article

Ottoman Turkish goldsmith. As one of the craftsmen attached to the Ottoman court, he produced a number of elaborate pieces that are either signed by him or can be attributed to him on stylistic grounds. The latter group includes the crown presented by Sultan Ahmed I to his vassal ...

Article

British, 20th century, male.

Born 14 August 1888, in London; died 14 February 1929, in London.

Painter, medallist, illustrator. Portraits, landscapes.

London Group.

Sydney Carline was the son of George Carline and brother of Richard and Hilda Carline. He studied from 1907 to 1910 at the Slade School of Art in London and then in Paris. During World War I he served the Royal Flying Corps with his brother Richard and was posted to Italy, the Western Front and in the Middle East. He was appointed official war artist with the R.A.F. in ...

Article

Armenian, 20th century, male.

Active in France from 1971.

Born 1940, in Yerevan.

Painter, sculptor, draughtsman.

David Erevantzi was an apprentice goldsmith, silversmith and ceramist in his native town. In his student years he tried to renew the ancient goldsmith’s art, traditional in Armenia, at the same time as he was practising ceramics, painting and drawing. His work as a sculptor consisted of monumental stone sculptures, ceramic compositions for decorative purposes, small reliefs and medals. He drew his inspiration from nature, the history of his native country and the art of the early Middle Ages in Romania, arriving at a kind of dreamlike figurativism. He participated successfully in pan-Soviet and East Bloc exhibitions after ...

Article

Egyptian, 20th century, female.

Active from 1925 in France.

Born 24 April 1907, in Alexandria; died 1 March 1986.

Sculptor, medallist.

Daria Gamsaragan went to France to study sculpture, settling there in 1925. She entered the academy of La Grande Chaumière and became a pupil of Bourdelle. She also worked with Csaky and Constant. From ...

Article

Czech, 20th century, male.

Born 15 June 1886, in Prague.

Sculptor, medallist.

Jaroslav Horejc is best known as a medallist.

London, 22 Feb 1995: Market in the Middle East (oil on canvas, 22¾ × 30¾ ins/58 × 78 cm) GBP 1,610

Prague, 20 Nov 1999...

Article

Eric de Waele

Region of Iran, near the border with Iraq, which has given its name to a remarkable series of ancient bronze objects, especially those produced between c. 1200 and 600 bc .

Luristan is situated in the central part of the Zagros mountain range, which runs north-west to south-east along Iran’s frontier with Iraq. The region can be divided into two parts: to the west is the Pusht-i Kuh (‘behind the mountain’), which descends towards the plains of Mesopotamia and Susiana, while to the east, at a higher altitude, lies the Pish-i Kuh (‘before the mountain’). Nomadic Lurs inhabit its high, fertile valleys....

Article

Opizari  

N. Yezerskaya

Georgian goldsmiths and silversmiths. They were outstanding exponents of the traditional techniques of embossing and chasing in silver gilt (see Georgia, Republic of, §V, 1, (i)). They worked in a monastery at Opiza (Turk. Bağular) in the Georgian princedom of Tao-Klardjeti (now north-east Turkey), where Beka Opizari may have been Beshken Opizari’s pupil....

Article

Gordon Campbell

Ostrich eggs were used as containers in North Africa from the fourth millennium BC, and many decorated examples survive from the Punic civilisation of the first millennium BC. They have been found at Carthage, in Sardinia, Sicily and, especially, in Spain and Ibiza (e.g. Ibiza. Mus. Arqueol.). They were painted with geometric and stylized designs and used as dishes and cups. In the Middle East decorated ostrich eggs have been found in the Royal Cemetery at Ur (...

Article

Italo Zannier

English photographer and medallist. He was active from about 1850 in Malta, where he met the Beato family brothers, whose sister, Maria Matilde, became Robertson’s wife. Together with the Beato brothers, Robertson travelled to Athens in 1852, and then c. 1853 to Constantinople, where he was appointed chief engraver of the Imperial Mint of Turkey. With the help of the ...

Article

Susan T. Goodman

Israeli painter. For over 70 years he worked as a watchmaker as well as a scribe, silversmith and stonemason in Safed, an important centre of Jewish mysticism. After his watch-repair shop was destroyed in the War of Independence (1948), he earned a living by selling plywood toys coloured with crayon. In the mid-1950s Yosl Bergner, who recognized in these charming works the essential qualities of folk art, encouraged Shalom to paint. Shalom’s artistic vocabulary grew out of the rich traditions of his Hasidic heritage. The mystical literature of Safed and the deep impression made by the landscape of Israel contributed to his spiritual and visual development, while his work also reveals a deep affinity and commitment to the Scriptures, although he did much more than merely illustrate the scriptural narrative, as in ...

Article

Stephen K. Scher

Italian medallist and sculptor. He was trained at the Accademia di Belle Arti, Palermo (1918–19), and in Rome, at the Accademia di Belle Arti (1920–25) and at the Scuola d’Arte della Medaglia (1920–23). He taught sculpture at the Accademia di Belle Arti in Palermo from ...

Article

In its most general sense, spolia (pl., from Lat. spolium: ‘plunder’) denotes all artifacts re-employed in secondary contexts, from building blocks reused in a wall to pagan gems mounted on a Christian reliquary. It is a matter of debate whether this broad application of the term is justified, or whether it should be restricted to the relatively small subset of reused objects that were taken or ‘stripped’ (like spoils) from their original context, rather than found, purchased, inherited or otherwise acquired by non-violent means. It is likewise debated when the use of spolia should be considered meaningful, if at all. Arnold Esch defined five possible motives for using spolia: convenience, profanation, Christianization, political legitimation and aesthetic attraction. Michael Greenhalgh has argued for reducing the motives to three (at least with regard to marble): pragmatism, aesthetics and ideology; while Finbarr Barry Flood cautioned against reductive interpretations generated by any taxonomy, insisting that reused objects are mutable in meaning and capable of multiple interpretations during their life cycle....

Article

German goldsmith, draughtsman and engraver. He was the son of Israel Thelott (1616–96), a goldsmith and member of a French family of artists documented in Augsburg from 1585. As early as 1670 Thelott executed a relief of the Trinity (London, BM), a copy of a work by ...

Article

N. Yezerskaya

Georgian painter. He studied at the trade school in Tiflis and began working as a master metalworker and blacksmith. His drawing ability was such that he was encouraged to study at the Academy of Arts, St Petersburg. He studied in the studio of Il’ya Repin, whose ideas on Critical Realism in painting had an influence on his work. Toidze’s interest in national culture was already perceptible in his diploma work ...