Arts of the Islamic World

May 3, 1998 – January 3, 2016

Freer Gallery of Art
Jefferson Drive and 12th Street, SW
Washington, DC

Galleries 3 & 4 Floor Plan

The arts of the Islamic world flourished in a vast geographic area extending from Morocco and Spain to the islands of Southeast Asia. Although distinct in their cultural, artistic, ethnic, and linguistic identities, the people of this region have shared one predominant faith, Islam. The works on view here represent the three principal media for artistic expression in the Islamic world: architecture (both religious and secular), the arts of the book (calligraphy, illustration, illumination, and bookbinding), and the arts of the object (ceramics, metalwork, glass, woodwork, textiles, and ivory).

The works date from the 9th century to the 17th century. On view are brass bowls and candlesticks, folios from the Koran, earthenware and ceramics, and paintings representing the traditions of Iran, Iraq, Syria, Egypt, and other parts of North Africa, Turkey, Afghanistan, and Uzbekistan.