From 828, when Venetian merchants carried home from Alexandria the stolen relics of St. Mark, to the fall of the Venetian Republic to Napoleon in 1797, the visual arts in Venice were dramatically influenced by Islamic art. Because of its strategic location on the Mediterranean, Venice had long imported objects from the Near East through channels of trade, and it flourished during this particular period as a commercial, political, and diplomatic hub. This monumental book examines Venice's rise as the "bazaar of Europe" and how and why the city absorbed artistic and cultural ideas that originated in the Islamic world.
Venice and the Islamic World, 8281797 features a wide range of fascinating images and objects, including paintings and drawings by familiar Venetian artists such as Bellini, Carpaccio, and Tiepolo; beautiful Persian and Ottoman miniatures; and inlaid metalwork, ceramics, lacquer ware, gilded and enameled glass, textiles, and carpets made in the Serene Republic and the Mamluk, Ottoman, and Safavid Empires. Together these exquisite objects illuminate the ways Islamic art inspired Venetian artists, while also highlighting Venice's own views toward its neighboring region. Fascinating essays by distinguished scholars and conservators offer new historical and technical insights into this unique artistic relationship between East and West.