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Fri 11 May - Sun 12 August 2012
Long before the European obsession for Chinese porcelain began, the attractive high-fired wares were one of the treasured imports in the Islamic Middle East. Blue-and-white Chinese porcelain especially fascinated everyone who laid eyes upon it. Since its first real appearance in the Middle East in the 14th-century, blue and white wares were eagerly collected, copied, exchanged, and - especially in the Indo-Persian world -, displayed in "porcelain houses" (chini-khane), all carefully arranged in individually shaped niches.
For the first time ever, the Museum of Islamic Art exhibits a selection of Islamic paintings, primarily from 17th- and 18th-century India, focus on the elegant blue and white porcelains as prestige objects. The delicate paintings shown together with a selection of ceramics, both Chinese blue-and-white porcelain from the collection of the Museum für Asiatische Kunst (Museum of Asian Art), as well as Persian and Ottoman Turkish ceramics, made in the sincerest homage to the allure of Chinese blue-and-white.
The exhibition is dedicated to John Carswell on the occasion of his 80th birthday. His contribution to the history of Chinese blue-and-white porcelain and its impact on the Middle East is immense.
Museum für Islamische Kunst