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Roses and Jasmine, Gold and Lapislazuli - the Interior Decoration Program of Urban Palaces in Ottoman Syria

Feb 15, 2014

Location: Shangri La

Presenter: Dr. Anke Scharrahs, Scholar-in-Residence

Damascus retains unique treasures in its historic Old City. The private homes of the 17th to 19th centuries - many of them hidden from the public eyes - reflect the highly developed taste and social relations of Damascus' citizens. This talk will take you through magnificent creations of interior design to discover forgotten fresh color combinations, opulent fruit bowls, diversified flower bouquets, flying birds, painted landscapes and elegant calligraphy. The elaborately composed surface decoration, with layers of shimmering pattern and color, produces the uniquely glorious atmosphere of Damascene residences.

Dr. Anke Scharrahs is a conservator specializing in polychrome wooden surfaces with a special interest in Islamic art. She has a Ph.D from the Academy of Fine Arts in Dresden, Germany and she has been engaged in research and conservation of Syrian-Ottoman interiors for 15 years, both in museum collections and in historic houses in Germany, New York, and Damascus. She is the author of the book Damascene Ajami Interiors: Forgotten Jewels of Interior Design published in 2013.




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