Mosques: Splendours of Islam challenges our conceptions of what a mosque might look like. In his foreword, Prince Amyn Aga Khan writes: “These experts illustrate how mosques express the needs and aesthetics of widely varied and distinctive communities unified by a common spiritual quest, a shared ethic.”
For people of all creeds, visiting a mosque can be an intense, often overwhelming, experience. Faith plays a major part, of course, but non-Muslims are also moved by the elaborate shapes and intricate details of these monumental structures, as well as the ways in which light and shadow respond to mihrabs, minarets and the spaces in between. As Leyla Uluhanli writes in the introduction to her coffee-table book, Mosques: Splendours of Islam, “the mosque is the perfect vehicle to express architecture’s transformative power”, The National, a private English-language daily newspaper published in Abu Dhabi, reported.
The book, published by Rizzoli and launched in Dubai earlier this month, features dozens of photographs to savour, but through 10 essays by leading Islamic experts, it also traces the evolution of the mosque from the seventh century CE right through to the present day. There are sections on everything from the origins of mosque design to the sacred objects stored within the walls of these buildings.
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