"Glass of the Sultans" by Stefano Carboni

Glass of the Sultans Stefano Carboni, David Whitehouse

Metropolitan Museum of Art Series
Publication date:
11 May 2001
Metropolitan Museum of Art
340 pages: 305 x 229mm
100 b/w + 176 color illus.


Islamic glassmakers were not only brilliant technicians and innovators in their own right, but they also preserved many of the methods of Late Antique Roman craftsmen, passing them on centuries later to Venetian and other European masters. This lovely book is the first comprehensive study of the accomplishments of these artisans. The volume presents glass objects from collections throughout the world—from perfume flasks to pitchers, mosque lanterns to boxes, inkwells to vases—ranging from the seventh to the nineteenth century and through many of the major artistic centers of the Muslim world.

Five introductory essays cover all facets of the subject, including historical background, archaeological excavations, issues of connoisseurship, technology, and science. The authors then discuss 150 masterworks of Islamic glass, grouped by technique or type of decoration (blown, mold-blown, hot-worked, mosaic, painted, cut, and engraved), each of which is illustrated in full color. Examples of European glass objects are also included as illuminating reference points.

Stefano Carboni is associate curator in the department of Islamic art at The Metropolitan Museum of Art. David Whitehouse is executive director of the Corning Museum of Glass. Robert Brill is the research scientist at Corning, and William Gudenrath is the resident adviser there.

So completely satisfying in content and presentation . . . [it] establishes a new standard in the study and interpretaion of Islamic glass.

?The first comprehensive study of the accomplishments of these artisans. This lovely book includes glass objects from collections all over the world . . . ranging from the 7th to the 19th century, and through many of the major artistic centers of the Muslim world.??New England Antiques Journal

?Seldom has this reviewer encountered a publication so completely satisfying in content and presentation, one that covered such a complex subject so thoroughly and clearly. In every sense Glass of the Sultans . . . establishes a new standard in the study and interpretation of Islamic glass. It is a worthy, permanent record of the most comprehensive exhibition ever held on the subject. . . . A synthesis of decades of research on old and new sources, a brilliant presentation of one of the most productive but less-appreciated eras of glassmaking, a lasting contribution to the literature, and an inspiration for those glass artists who are creating today what museums in the future will be increasingly eager to collect.??Paul N. Perrot, American Craft

?The first comprehensive study of these works, packing in full-color photos of Islamic glass masterworks along with introductions to Islamic history, culture, and art. Outstanding.??Bookwatch

?A book in a million. Here is a series of finely researched essays which provide an enormous amount of information on the Islamic glass-makers and the widespread dispersal of their wares through Europe and the Far East. . . . A brilliantly written and richly illustrated book which is an inspiration.??Richard Edmonds, Birmingham Post