Modernism: Paris and Berlin

In the West-oriented educational setting of the 1920s, as part of the Ministry of Education’s initiative to send successful students abroad to help them gain […]

Western Influence on Ottoman Art

Ruganî Cilbent (Patent Leather Portfolio), Seyyid Mustafa Edirnevî, 1766-1767. Cardboard, illumination paint, lacquer.

Ruganî Cilbent (Patent Leather Portfolio), Seyyid Mustafa Edirnevî, 1766-1767. Cardboard, illumination paint, lacquer.

You can explore Ekrem Hakkı Ayverdi’s remarkable collection at the Ekrem Hakkı Ayverdi (1899 – 1984): Architectural Historian, Restorator, Collector exhibition. This time on the blog we take a look at Western influence on Ottoman art…

Influences of Western origin were observed, first in architectural decoration and later in other decorative arts, in Ottoman art as of the second quarter of the 18th century. Paralleling the popular styles in the West, the said influences can be listed as follows:  Rococo, Empire, which became popular during the reign of Mahmud II (1808-1839), followed by Neo-Renaissance, Eclectic, Neo-Gothic, Orientalist, and finally Art Nouveau. All these different styles are best observed in the arts of architecture, illumination, and textile.

Shallow pan with lid, İstanbul-Beykoz, 19th century. Opaline, coloured glass paint, gilt.

Shallow pan with lid,
İstanbul-Beykoz, 19th century. Opaline, coloured glass paint, gilt.

City Wall Gate, Hoca Ali Rıza, 1864-1935. Late 19th-early 20th century, oil on canvas.

City Wall Gate, Hoca Ali Rıza, 1864-1935. Late 19th-early 20th century, oil on canvas.

 

The earliest influences of Western painting in the Ottoman art of illumination emerged in the first quarter of the 18th century. Foreign painters working at the palace in the 19th century, “modern” art courses offered first at military schools and later at the Imperial School of Fine Arts (present-day Mimar Sinan University of Fine Arts), and the education of select students in Europe constituted a Western tradition of Ottoman painting nurtured by these different sources.

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