Art/ Collection/ Art Object

Textile Fragment

Object Name:
14th–15th century
Attributed to Spain or North Africa
Silk; lampas
Textile: H. 29 3/4 in. (75.6 cm) W. 45 3/8 in. (115.3 cm) Mount: H. 45 7/8 in. (116.5 cm) W. 50 5/16 in. (127.8 cm) D. 7/8 in. (2.2 cm)
Credit Line:
Fletcher Fund, 1946
Accession Number:
Not on view
Geometric compositions predominate silk textiles of Nasrid Spain (1232–1492) and the contemporaneous Marinid Dynasty (1269–1465) of North Africa; they are often based on intricate patterns that repeat into infinity. The design of this fragment is centered on rows of eight-pointed stars where each compartment is filled with motifs reminiscent of fleurs-de-lis. While the stars are identical, outlined in red, the color of the fill alternates from blue to yellow. Inscriptions also play a central role here, be they the cartouches formed by interlaces bearing "Eternal Glory," or the two horizontal bands with abstract kufic writing that repeat the word "happiness" in mirror image. A variety of smaller motifs, from the narrow bands of reciprocal blue and white stepped crenellation to palmettes and arabesques, complete this assemblage that echos architectural decoration.
Inscription: The Arabic inscription in Naskhi and Kufic reads "Eternal glory" and "Beatitude."

Marking: See link panel.
[ Giorgio Sangiorgi, Rome, until 1946; to Loewi]; [ Adolph Loewi, Los Angeles, 1946; sold to MMA]
"Masterpieces from The Metropolitan Museum of Art New York." In The Arts of Islam. Berlin, 1981. no. 63, pp. 160-161, ill. p. 161 (b/w).

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