In the reading there was some distinction between Muslim and European/Christian’s and their use of the Muslim rugs. I found it interesting that in European culture they had rugs just as decoration and didn’t put much more thought into it. The other interesting aspect to this is that in most paintings with someone standing on the carpet/rug it says that “but paintings showing Christians wearing shoes standing on carpets probably reflects ignorance, not hostility (Carrier, pg 7). So it’s not like they were doing it intentionally. There was peace. It was just a lack of knowledge and understanding of these rugs. It says “generally they have no relationship with the represented figures in the paintings containing them” (Carrier, pg 8). I’m curious how these carpets went from heavy symbolism to decoration. How did this happen? What’s the in between?
Another part I found interesting was on page 21 where it says, “Placing a work of art in a historical narrative takes attention away from its visual qualities.” So what I understand from that is that when we focus too much on the why we forget the what (..it is).
There’s one line he said that I think really summarizes this whole idea overall, “to fully understand individual works of art, we need to understand their relationship with others, including, ultimately art from all cultures” (pg. 25).
Hannah VanDyke, Hope College 2017
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