Middle-east Arab News Opinion | Asharq Al-awsat

The Orient Depicted in 40 European Paintings | ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive 2005 -2017
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Painting by David Roberts

London- Forty oriental inspired art pieces have been prepared this month, in London, for the orientalism themed art auction on April 19th. The Sotheby’s fine art auction will display the works of legends, such as David Roberts, John Frederick Lewis, Alberto Pasini and Jean Leon Gerome.

According to the chair of the Oriental department of the corporation the auctioned pieces of art exhibit and reflect the fascination European and American artists with the diverse rich Islamic world. The enthrallment was driven from several scenes, whether it is the Bedouin (Arab tribal nomads- usually cast in deserts-) lifestyle, prayers in mosques found in Cairo or Istanbul or even the loud vivacious noises crowding the streets and markets in Egypt or Damascus.

A painting called “Prayer of the Dawn” belonging to the works of the Austrian artist, Ludwig Deutsch, who had visited Cairo in 1880 for the first time, will be put up for sale at the upcoming auction. The art piece shows the artist’s work emphasizing the smallest of detailes found in a prayer’s jilbaab (a long and loose-fit coat or garment worn by some Muslim women), a side cast cloak, an Islamic mattress for praying with a man praying, a wooden cupboard holding decorated with carved patterns and a hanging chandelier.

The portrait is described to display both natural aspects of the scenery with close intimacy.

The auction will also include the works of John Frederick Lewis, one of which is a superb painting “outdoor gossip” done in 1873. The painting was long displayed next to its complementary piece “indoor gossip” at the Whitworth Art Gallery in Manchester, England.

Louis had spent ten years in Cairo, during which he lived like the people there and dressed in local clothing. The artist would sometimes even portray himself in some of his paintings.

Aside the paintings, the auction will also exhibit sculptures, like the horse piece done by Antoine-Louis Barye and a 453 bronze piece collection, miniature in size, brought in from Vienna, each unit manually painted and representing different characters such as traders, retailers and those riding camels.