Islamic Art and the Museum

Islamic Art and the Museum

Approaches to Art and Archaeology of the Muslim World in the Twenty-First Century


9780863564130 January 2013 Paperback 374pp 129 colour illustrations

About the Book

The first years of the twenty-first century have witnessed an impressive re-evaluation of Islamic art and archaeology. However, while museums and galleries become increasingly important forums for public interest in Muslim cultures, there has been little discussion about content or categories of order and their new role in the light of modern museology, museum pedagogy and new approaches in other fields of knowledge.

Islamic Art and the Museum provides a historical and conceptual analysis of the notion of Islamic art and documents approaches to its presentation in museums worldwide. The contributors challenge existing notions of the research, methodology and analysis of Islamic art and investigate the extent to which socio-historical and anthropological approaches result in new analytical perspectives. They also examine the difficulties that need to be overcome when presenting Islamic art to avoid reducing the objects merely to the visual and aesthetic.

Museums covered in detail include the David Collection, Brooklyn Museum’s Arts of the Islamic World Galleries, Museum of Islamic Art in Doha, Hermitage Museum, British Museum, Aga Khan Museum in Toronto and the Museum of Islamic Art at the Pergamon Museum.

About the Contributors

Benoît Junod is the Director of the Museums and Exhibitions Unit of the Aga Khan Trust for Culture.

Georges Khalil is one of the founders of ‘Europe in the Middle East - The Middle East in Europe’ research programme.

Gerhard Wolf is the Director of the History of Art Unit at the Max-Planck Institute in Florence.

Stefan Weber is professor of Islamic studies at the University of Bonn. He is the editor-in-chief of Die Welt des Islams and has published extensively on modern Arabic prose and poetry.