Tile Panel with Wavy-vine Design

On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 460

This panel represents one of the ceramic tile workshops outside Iznik, in the Ottoman province of Syria. It is composed of six tiles, each almost a foot square in size and slightly larger than the standard size used at Iznik. It is designed with a repeating pattern of parallel undulating grapevines ornamented with distinctive dark-blue grape leaves, vine tendrils, and small bunches of grapes. Differences in the individual tiles suggest that the overall design may have been executed freehand over a large field of tiles, rather than each individual tile having been painted from the same paper template. Such variations, almost never found in Iznik production, are a common feature of Damascus tiles in the seventeenth century. Virtually identical tiles are found in the Darwishiyya Mosque in Damascus, erected in 1571.

Tile Panel with Wavy-vine Design, Stonepaste; polychrome painted under transparent glaze

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