Islamic Art at the Louvre

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.

candlestick with ducks
candlestick with ducks

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.

ceramic plaque shaped like mihrab
ceramic plaque shaped like mihrab

One form of Islamic art is based on interlocking geometric patterns, such as these ceramic 8-pointed stars and crosses.

ceramic stars and crosses
ceramic stars and crosses

This Egyptian door has stars made of ivory.

door with stars
door with stars

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.

Louvre's Islamic Art wing
Louvre’s Islamic Art wing

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I enjoy travel, art, food, photography, nature, California native plants, history, and yoga. I am a retired software engineer. The gravatar is a Nuttall's woodpecker that visited our backyard.

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