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HOME : Islamic Art : AS Collection Consignment : Islamic Bronze Jug
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Islamic Bronze Jug - FZ.382A
Origin: Central Asia
Circa: 12 AD to 13 AD
Dimensions: 9.25" (23.5cm) high
Collection: Islamic Art
Style: Seljuk
Medium: Bronze


Additional Information: AS

Location: Great Britain
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Description
Metalware has been one of the principal forms of artistic expression in the Islamic world. Responding to the taste and needs of different social and economic classes, artists continuously explored the technical and decorative potential of different metals, as to transform objects of a simple functionality into supremely refined works of art. In the late 10th century, metalworkers in eastern Iran began to manufacture brass and bronze objects with designs inlaid in gold, silver and copper. This technique allowed metalworkers to decorate vessels with scenes of hunting and feasting—associated with courtly life— astrological signs, and bold calligraphic dedications to rulers. Although the art of inlay was already known in West Asia since at least the 6th century, after the arrival of Islam it reached new levels of artistic and technical sophistication. These vessels are among some of the most powerful expressions of the social, political, and cultural life of their times, disclosing the aspirations of individuals and the of societies for which they were created.   Jug, cast and hammered in bronze with engraved decoration. 12th The globular body, fluted at the centre, rests on a tall splayed foot-ring; sloping shoulder with engraved floral decorated cartouches interrupted by round medallions, short and tapering neck benedictory inscription, written in Thuluth (a script variety of Islamic calligraphy used in medieval times on decorations), S – shaped elegant handle with lion as a thumb-piece; domical lid capped by a sitting peacock.   This bronze jug is a glorious example of the mastery of Islamic metalworkers. The shape of the vessel is inherent in its purpose, merging the functional form with the decorative adornments. However, the decorative elements conform to the shape, creating an elegant and refined appearance without much compromising its use. The two stylized animals are prominently displayed, the lion atop the pouring handle, the bird upon the lid, serving both as a knob and as decoration. The cylindrical top of the jug. Is adorned by a band of Kufic text engraved into the bronze and inlaid with silver, thus highlighting the letters. This text might be a dedication to the patron of the vessel, it also might be a religious or poetical passage, or perhaps state the identity of the artist. Much like this band interweaves the cufic text with a spiraling pattern of foliage, the vessel as a whole merges the functional form of the jug with the decorative adornments. FZ.382. - (FZ.382A)

 

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