What is AAT?

The Art & Architecture Thesaurus (AAT) (r) is a structured vocabulary for generic concepts related to art and architecture. It was developed by The Getty Research Institute to help research institutions become consistent in the terminology they use.Learn More

Object Name: 
Accession Number: 
Overall H: 8.3 cm, Diam (max): 9.9 cm
Not on Display
Web Description: 
This cup belongs to a large group of early Islamic vessels that were decorated by pinching the surface with tongs. The metal tongs had circular or square ends containing the carved motif that was to be impressed in relief on the wall of the glass. Three different pairs of tongs, which produced triangular, circular, and heart-shaped patterns, were used to decorate the Corning cup. The makers of such objects may have been seeking ways to achieve some freedom of expression within the rules of repetition common in Islamic art. This freedom could be achieved by using different combinations of tongs, which bore patterns different from those of one- or two-part molds. Archeological finds indicate that this type of glass was traded extensively in the Islamic world during the ninth and 10th centuries.
Kouchakji, Fahim (b. Syria, 1886-1976), Source
Primary Description: 
Bowl. Transparent yellowish green, with some small bubbles and fewer large ones; occasional darker streaks. Blown; pincered. Cylindrical bowl. Rim plain, with rounded lip; wall almost vertical, but with slightly convex profile, curving in at bottom; base plain; pontil mark. Wall has three horizontal rows of pincered motifs: at rim, above mid-point, and at and below mid-point. All rows were made with different tools. Row at rim (1) has 11 contiguous or adjacent V-shaped motifs; that above mid-point (2) has 13 circles; row below mid-point (3), contains eight stylized heart-shaped motifs, each enclosing one vertical line and two semi-circles.
Dining with the Sultan: The Fine Art of Feasting
Detroit Institute of Arts
Los Angeles County Museum of Art
Museum of Fine Arts, Boston
Dining with the Sultan is a pan-Islamic exhibition that will span the eighth through nineteenth centuries (and perhaps beyond) and include some 150 works of art representing a rich variety of media from three continents. We expect this to be a transformative exhibition, one emphasizing our shared humanity rather than our singular histories. It will follow the model of LACMA’s 2011 exhibition Gifts of the Sultan: The Arts of Giving at the Islamic Courts. It similarly will introduce an American audience to Islamic art and culture with objects of undisputed quality and appeal, only this time viewed through the universal lens of fine dining. In considering the admittedly very substantial and diffuse theme of feasting at the Islamic courts, preliminary research has led us to cast as wide a net as possible in terms of both the time frame and the concept of “fine dining.” The resources that inform this study so far are two-fold: 1) Rich textual sources, including a broad array of cook books and books of delicacies, texts on etiquette, instructions for princes, royal memoirs, collections of food poetry and parody, dynastic histories, endowment deeds, kitchen accounts, dietetic and medicinal works, travelers’ narratives, and diplomatic reports and communiqués. 2) Works of art that can be identified from their inscriptions or specific shapes as containers and receptacles for food or beverage, or are associated with preparing and serving food, or else those works that are similar to examples described by the written sources, as well as works of art, primarily manuscript illustrations, which depict food preparation and dining. Clearly it is the second category that primarily will provide the visual focus (the flesh, so to speak) of the exhibition, while the first will supply the documentary framework (the bones, as it were) as conveyed through didactic materials and especially the exhibition catalogue. The sheer quantity of primary sources and the large number of relevant first-rate works of art together indicate the importance of food culture at the Islamic courts. The exhibition, which is in preparation for 2023, will require between 6,000-8,000 sf. It will be organized primarily by sub-themes, which will include topics such as coffee culture in the Ottoman era, outdoor feasting or picnicking, and the continuity of Late Antique/Persian royal cuisine and etiquette at the early Islamic courts. At LACMA, the installation will include our 18th-century Damascus Room in order to suggest the types of architectural spaces used for receiving and feasting family and honored guests. On a popular level, the exhibition will stimulate not only the eyes but the appetite, reminding visitors of the commonly shared pleasure of food—both its taste and its presentation; on a scholarly level the exhibition will provide much needed information on the enormous class of luxury objects that may be broadly defined as tableware, while also demonstrating how gustatory discernment was a fundamental activity at the great Islamic courts.
Traveling the Silk Road: Ancient Pathway to the Modern World
American Museum of Natural History 2009-11 through 2010-08
National Museum of Natural Science 2011-06-11 through 2011-09-12
National Museum of Australia 2012-03-31 through 2012-07-29
Palazzo delle Esposizioni 2012-10-27 through 2013-03-24
National Chaing Kai Shek Memorial Hall
Glass of the Sultans
Benaki Museum
Corning Museum of Glass
Metropolitan Museum of Art
Glass from the Ancient World: So Diverse a Unity
University of Michigan 1991-04-05 through 1991-05-05
Isurāmu garasu=Islamic glass/イスラーム・ガラス=Islamic glass/真道洋子著; 桝屋友子監修 (2020) illustrated, preface color plate 12;
Islamic Glass in the Corning Museum of Glass Volume Two (2014) illustrated, p. 152, #878; BIB# 113723
Islamic Masterworks: 'Glass of the Sultans' at the Met (2001-11) illustrated, fig. 10; BIB# AI53342
Glass of the Sultans (2001) illustrated, p. 130-131, #47; BIB# 68105
Glass in the Islamic World (2001) illustrated, [p. 5, bottom];
Hikari no shouchu: sekai no garasu = The glass (1992) p. 95, #149; BIB# 58995
Glass from the Ancient World: So Diverse a Unity (1991) illustrated, p. 76, no.49; BIB# 34381