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"Empire of the Sultans: Ottoman Art from the Khalili Collection"
2000-07-30 until 2000-10-08
Detroit Institute of Art
Explore the vitality of Ottoman artistic expression across five
centuries. From the Nasser Khalili collection, one of the most
important private collections of Islamic Art in the world, Empire of
the Sultans contains more than 200 objects illustrating the great
variety and beauty of works produced under Turkish Ottoman
These works were created by artists and craftsmen from
throughout the Ottoman empire, not only by Turks from the
homeland, but also people from the Balkan lands, Armenians,
Greeks, Egyptians, Syrians and North Africans. These different
traditions united to form the arts of the empire. On the other
hand, Ottoman court art, developed for the Imperial Palace, set
the artistic fashions and in turn influenced aesthetic values
throughout the far-flung empire. These various styles brought
into being a wealth of objects that included rich carpets and
brocaded silks and velvets, beautifully illuminated Korans,
elegant calligraphy, and dazzling ceramics and metalwork.
At its height the Empire stretched from North Africa to Iran, and
from Greece north to Hungary, ruling much of the Near East and
parts of Europe. The Ottomans (1342-1922), originally Turkic
tribesmen from Central Asia, ruled for 600 years, making them
the longest surviving dynastic state in Islamic history.
In addition to viewing these wonderful objects, a special family
path allows families to experience the Empire through a series
of hands-on activities. Guests can outfit an Ottoman warrior,
chart their family tree, or listen to Turkish stories and music.
Calligraphic Lion, 1913;