Volume 35 no 1 September / October 2020 – The Attentive Artist

Thirty three Arch Bridge (c1602, Isfahan, Iran)

Thanks to the patronage of Shah Abbas 1, a period began in which richness of details, magnificence of colours and compositional imaginativeness found expression in complex buildings and above all urban development on a huge but serene scale of calm grandeur. In the magnificence of projects, their calibrated emotional impact and the convincing relationship between constructional features and environment, the golden age of Shah Abbas, although not marked by notable technical developments and often mediocre in the quality of materials used, represents the apogee and ultimate expression of Persian Islamic architecture. A perfect example of the decision to make everything that went into the city beautiful are the bridges, conceived as landscape features, dykes to carry water to the gardens, and places of amusement and relaxation for the contemplation of passing time and changing light.

Islamic Art by Luca Mozzati. Published by Prestel, Germany. 2009.

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