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HOME : Islamic Art : AS Collection Consignment : Bronze Engraved Tray
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Bronze Engraved Tray - LO.650
Origin: Transoxiana or Khurasan
Circa: 1100 AD to 1200 AD
Dimensions: 1.75" (4.4cm) high x 20" (50.8cm) wide
Collection: Islamic art
Medium: Quarternary Bronze

Additional Information: AS

Location: Great Britain
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Metalware in the Near East and Central Asia has always enjoyed a prestige beyond that of any other applied art such as ceramics or textiles. Major pieces were specially commissioned and often bear dedicatory inscriptions to the princes and great nobles for whom they were made, often joined to the proudly inscribed names of their craftsmen and artists; The best pieces were in bronze, either engraved, inlaid, overlaid or beaten in repoussé, that is hammered out from the inside, so that the designs would then appear in relief on the surface and their very durability and impressive appearance give them a high standing and dignity of their own. . The roots of Islamic metalwork are to be found in Byzantium and Persia. In the early 7th century the Arabs took over large territories of these two great empires and absorbed local metalware techniques and forms, and by adding inscriptions in kufic script contributed additionally to a new development in the category. Very little is known of the art of metalwork in Persia and Central Asia in the early Islamic period, with the exception of few large dishes datable to the Ghaznavids(977- 1186), until the Seljuq period, when new forms started to appear, while lavish inlays and incrustation of gold, silver and copper started gradually spreading onto the surface of objects. Large round tray of hammered and raised brass with engraved decoration. Flat base with concave walls ending in a convex rim; on the centre a 12-petaled rosette in relief on medallion enclosed by a Kufic inscription, interrupted by four roundels and further enhanced by a concentric row of stylised palmettes; two intersecting stars radiate from the centre, outer epigraphic band in Kufic over scrollwork, interrupted by six ogival medallions which emerge from the tips of the stars. This impressive bronze dish was made of a high-tin content copper alloy (alloy of copper and about 20% tin). The style of engraving and the elaborate composition of the design would indicate a 12th to 13th century dating and a possible place of manufacture in Iran, probably Khorasan. - (LO.650)


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