Insight Into A Sophisticated Painting Technique: Three Polychrome Wooden Interiors From Ottoman Syria In German Collections And Field Research In Damascus

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Publication Type:

Conference Paper


Scharrahs, Anke;


Conservation and the Eastern Mediterranean: Contributions to the 2010 IIC Congress, Istanbul, p.134-139 (2010)


Technical studies of three Syrian interiors in German collections ('Aleppo Room', dated ad 1601/1604, Museum for Islamic Art, Berlin; 'Damascus Room', dated ad 1810, Ethnological Museum, Dresden; 'Arabicum', late eighteenth century, Villa Gutmann, Potsdam) have provided illuminating information on now-forgotten decorative painting techniques characteristic of Syrian urban architecture of the fifteenth to the early nineteenth centuries. The results of these studies are presented together with information derived from studies of the few surviving original interiors in Syria, Lebanon and south east Turkey. Practical reconstruction experiments were used to investigate lost techniques and the original surface appearance of the so called 'ajam rooms'.