The day after visiting Versailles, we visited the palace the Louis XIV vacated, now the Louvre Museum. Following a theme that emerged across our 2013 travels — at Shangri La, the Alhambra, and the Metropolitan Museum — we started with the Louvre’s Islamic art. We weren’t disappointed.
This candlestick was beaten from a single sheet of copper in the 12th century.
This beautiful ceramic plaque is shaped like a mihrab, a semicircular niche in the wall of a mosque that indicates the direction of Mecca, and therefore the direction that person praying need to face. At Shangri La we saw a mihrab with metallic glaze like this, but photos weren’t allowed.
One form of Islamic art is based on interlocking geometric patterns, such as these ceramic 8-pointed stars and crosses.
This Egyptian door has stars made of ivory.
Finally, the Louvre’s Islamic art wing is built into a courtyard of the Louvre, with an undulating glass roof. We happily sent the morning taking it all in.