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Touring and Automobile Club of Turkey

Illuminated Manuscript

Tezhip, illuminated manuscript which means "gilding" is one of the important branches of book arts and Turkish-Islamic arts performed at Bazaar of Istanbul Arts.

Illuminated manuscript performed using gold and various dyeing substances is performed by creating compositions out of ornamentation items such as characterized animal and vegetative motifs, clouds according to certain rules. This art form, first, appeared in handwritten manuscripts as well as ornamentation of calligraphy plates or independent works of art.

The illuminated manuscript has an ancient history that starts with Anatolian Seljuks and stretches to the Ottoman. One of the earliest examples of it is a Quran Page dated 1131 which is, today, being exhibited at Topkapı Palace Library. This particular form of art reached its prime during the reign of Suleiman the Magnificent. During such era, Şah Kulu and Kara Memi started great schools that created a great impact upon ornamentation arts with their works.

In the 18th century, the Western art affected Turkish ornamentation arts and an over-embellished understanding, known as Rococo style, gained prominence in illuminated manuscript. During the said era, classic forms were replaced by flower motifs depicted in bouquet, vase or basket, and the said style survived until end of the 19th century.

Late 19th century is considered an era which caused the illuminated manuscript to regress upon advancement of the printing. Demand for handwritten works declined gradually due to mass book printing, and illuminated manuscript was no longer needed.

Calligraphy which constitutes an inseparable integrity with Illuminated manuscript is being conserved by valuable craftsmen of the Bazaar of Istanbul Arts, a Touring undertaking.

To examine our illuminated manuscript works in details, you may visit our store.

Illumination - Istanbul Handicrafts Center

Examples of the works of our artists;

The artist performing the art of illumination in the Istanbul Handicrafts Center is as follows:

Zeynep Yüksel
Illuminator Zeynep Yüksel was born in 1977 in Bolu. She received illumination training at the...
Zeynep Yüksel
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Tukan Ajans