Islamic Architecture And Art

Islamic Architecture And Art

Islam is the religious belief preached by the Arab prophet Muhammad. In the five hundred years after Muhammad’s death in AD 632, C. Islamic architecture and art went far beyond its place of origin on the Arabian Peninsula. Mohammed’s followers, called Muslims, conquered the rest of the Middle East as well as North Africa, Spain, Central Asia, and North and Central India. Most of the conquered accepted the Islamic religion.

With the spread of Islam, a distinctive style of Islamic art gradually developed. It was mainly used for religious architecture, book illustrations, and decorating ceramics, metal objects, and some other helpful objects. Islamic architecture and art were influenced by the artistic or maybe inventive styles of the conquered areas. These distinctive Islamic styles comprise late Byzantine, Persian, and Roman art.

Restrictions That Influenced Islamic Architecture And Art

Constraints also influenced the development of Islamic art. Mohammed warned artists against imitating God, the creator of all life, by creating pictures or images of living beings. Therefore, most religious arts consisted of ornamental patterns that represented neither humans nor animals. The second limitation advised against the use of expensive materials. Islamic artists, therefore, mainly worked with brass, clay, and wood. They learned to decorate items made from these less expensive materials so that they looked as beautiful as silver or gold.

Design features

Limiting the creation of images results in the nature of one of the best exceptional Islamic art features! Artists let alone illustrating similar forms.

Instead, they developed a special kind of decoration, the arabesque. An arabesque is a very complicated design. It can consist of twisted patterns of vines, leaves, and flowers. It can consist of geometric shapes and straight-line patterns, or it can have curved lines that twist and turn with each other. Sometimes animal shapes were used, but they were always very stylized and not realistic.

Another essential feature of Islamic architecture and art is calligraphy usage or elegant handwriting. Arabic, can be wonderfully written in different spellings. These include geometric Kufic (straight type) writing and rounded, Naskhi. Many Islamic artists employed Arabic writing or maybe text as an element of their designs for religious books, wall decorations, and art objects. Particularly beautiful calligraphy and ornaments were used for copies of the Koran, the holy book of the Islamic faith.

Architecture (Islamic Architecture And Art)

Religious buildings, called mosques, in which Muslim folks worship, are among the most famous examples of Islamic architecture and art. Other types of buildings include madrasas, Tombs as well as palaces.


The first mosques were simple wooden and clay buildings. Then, as the world of Islamic architecture and art grew in size and power, large mosques were built from carved stone and brick. Since the tradition of Islamic construction did not yet exist, these early mosques were built after Christian churches pattern. The oldest and stunning mosque, the well-known Jerusalem Dome of the Rock, was put together in 691 Ara. It boasts many features of churches (Christian’s building), such as mosaic decorations and Greek-style columns.

Islamic architecture and art soon began to develop a new type of religious building that was designed specifically for Islamic worship. The first example of the original design is the Great Mosque in Damascus started around 705.

It is entered through a rectangular courtyard with covered walkways on three sides. There is a fountain in the yard that can be washed before prayer. The fourth wall of the courtyard is closer to Mecca, the holy city of Islam. All Muslims look to Mecca when they pray. A small arched prayer alcove marks the wall. There is a dome above the corridor leading to this niche. A tower or perhaps minaret is used to call the faithful to prayer.

Madrasas And Tombs (Islamic Architecture And Art)

Madrasas or religious schools were often built next to mosques. It is a four-sided structure built around a central court. Each side has a large vaulted room that opens onto the terrace. The students attended lectures in the large classrooms and lived in smaller rooms within the structure.

Sometimes a ruler’s grave was part of a building complex that included a mosque and madrasah. The Sultan Hasan tomb mosque, which was built in Cairo, Egypt in the 13th century, is diverse. It is depicted as a cross with four lovely corridors that open to a vast square terrace.

Another famous tomb is the Tatar warrior Tamerlane that was put up around 1400 in the Samarkand city. The structure boasts a shaped covered dome-like melon with light blue as well as gold tiles. The blue and gold tiles are of glazed ceramic that is cut in different sizes and then arranged in detailed patterns. Possibly the most well-known Islamic vault of all is the Taj Mahal in Agra, India. It was built in the 17th century by ruler Shah Jahan as a grave for his wife. The Taj Mahal is so famous that its name shows images of almost unreal splendor and beauty.


The first Muslim caliphs were used to isolation; they didn’t like to live in busy locations. These rulers built castles in the desert in which they (rulers) could relax. The palaces looked like that of Roman fortresses. They look like Roman fortresses because the palaces were built with stone and also encircled by walls with large towers. The palace rooms, the prayer rooms, the baths, and the rooms were decorated with murals and mosaics.

In the 700s, the world Muslim headquarters was moved right from great Damascus, Syria, Mesopotamia (now known as Iraq). The building of the palaces was altered because of the movement. The vaulted palaces were made of bricks covered with thick layers of concrete, and the interior was decorated with stucco reliefs. In the Jawsaq Palace, which was built around 850 in Samarra, Mesopotamia, the stucco motif had three different styles.

One showed deeply carved vine shapes and other added patterns to the surface of the main design. The third style used more abstract patterns, as in Central Asian nomadic metallurgy. These three styles contributed to the development of the arabesque decoration that became typical of Muslim art worldwide.

Lastly, other Islamic architecture and art developed disparities on this essential approach. Several mosques boast domes at every end of the hall that leads to the prayer place. Some other Muslim mosques have a large central dome. Some domes are furrowed on the outside and resemble massive melons.

Many mosques, especially in Spain, North Africa, and Persia, are covered with tiles. In the 1500s and 1600s, mosques with many domes and minarets became more complex. The Sultan Ahmed Mosque (Blue Mosque) in Istanbul, Turkey, is a typical example.

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