The Human Figure in Islamic Art – Holy Men, Princes, and Commoners

A richly illustrated book on a subject that is rarely elucidated: The Human Figure in Islamic Art.

The Human Figure in Islamic Art is the book behind the exhibition of the same name that will open at the David Collection on November 24, 2017. The book — like the exhibition — focuses on an unusually and rarely elucidated subject in the world of Islamic art: human depictions. The Human Figure in Islamic Art presents 75 important works from the David Collection, all of them focused on the human figure.

The book describes how, despite this reluctance, portraying human figures has nonetheless always played an important role in Islamic art. The human figure is found on many kinds of utility ware, but the motif also has a long and rich tradition especially in miniature painting. The paintings in the book largely feature princes, but also holy men and quite ordinary people in the form of illustrations for works of ction, depictions of real-life events, and true portraits.

The authors are Dr. Kjeld von Folsach, Director, and Joachim Meyer, Ph.D., Curator, from the David Collection. The book also includes an article by Jakob Skovgaard-Petersen, professor at the Department of Cross-Cultural and Regional Studies at the University of Copenhagen, who considers the human figure in the Islamic world from a modern perspective.

  • The Human Figure in Islamic Art – Holy Men, Princes, and Commoners
  • By Kjeld von Folsach and Joachim Meyer
  • Published: November 24, 2017
  • Translation by Martha Gaber Abrahamsen
  • Hardcover
  • Graphic design: Søren Damstedt, Trefold
  • Pages: 280
  • ISBN: 978-87-92949-96-7
  • Edition/impression: 1/1
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