Architecture of Al Andalus - Essay Example

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The influence of culture on the architectural design of cities and buildings around the world is evident in the relationship that exists between culture, religion and designing. For the case of Al-Andalus, it is evident that Islamic culture has shaped the designing process used…
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Architecture of Al Andalus
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Al-Andalus architecture The influence of culture on the architectural design of cities and buildings around the world is evident in the relationship that exists between culture, religion and designing. For the case of Al-Andalus, it is evident that Islamic culture has shaped the designing process used in the process of building. A research conducted by Barnet reveals that the set of buildings during the 10th and 11th centuries conform to a group of the Andalusia architecture, which has a strong peculiarity and is closely related to the brick architecture (Barnet 45). Therefore, when addressing Al-Andalus architecture, it is vital to evaluate the various aspects and factors that shape the development of the buildings. The exposure to these buildings helped eliminate the previous prejudices, and valuing the art in respect to Islamic architecture, which is prevalent in Islamic countries and cities. The existence of an autonomous territory during the caliphate period called Ath-Thagr al-ala led to the use of the terms Thagr or Zagri to define the Islamic architecture in Aragon (Anderson and Rosser-Owen 73). The cultural manifestation of religion, nation and ethnic movement is expressed intensely in the city especially a strong sense of orientalism.
One of the major contributors to the change in the architecture is mobility of the Islamic culture. The mobility led to the realization of orientation and freedom. The developed of attraction led to the increase in travelers which brought about change as a result of new intellectual artist arriving in the city. The combination of the Islamic and the Spanish Islamic culture in Al-Andalusia is an indication of the existence of movement between the towns and the integration of the various forms of architecture in designing of houses in the area (Eaves 165). However, the Spanish Islamic architecture has not been clearly studied leading to serious challenges in the evaluation of the changes in the new designs. The presence of the Caliphal art with formal characteristics of the mosque-Aljama of Cordova indicates the existence of integration between different forms of culture and architecture (Eaves 167). During the 10th and 11th century, systemic use of masonry and elegant use of Caliphal fabric was common because many inhabitants used horse shoe arch or the lobeled arc in the design process.
However, the incorporation of the Granada kingdom into the Castile kingdom under the supervision of King Aragon Ferdinand led to the protection of all the Moslem building in Granada (Barnet 78). The approach led to the conservation of the buildings, and the result of integration is differences in design. The Nazari or Nasri Islamic art is remarkably different from the Caliphal art especially when analyzing the Granada art. Likewise, the Aragonesse Islamic architecture is defined by the unique, admired and preserved monument known as La Aljaferia (Eaves 100). This form of art lacks masonry, without the horseshoe arch, but they are substituted by rubble work, brick or Tapial. The monument depicts excessive orientalism especially in Moslem art analysis. Therefore, the architecture of the town was affected by the freedom of movement and alignment to Islamic religion. The architecture is marked by several features including the horseshoe arc.
Works Cited
Anderson, Glaire D. and Mariam Rosser-Owen, Revisiting Al-Andalus: Perspectives on the Material Culture of Islamic Iberia and Beyond. New york: BRILL, 2007. Print.
Barnet, Slyvan. A short Guide to writing about Art. Michigan: Pearson, 2008.
Eaves, Morris. The Counter-Arts Conspiracy: Art and Industry in the Age of Blake. Michigan: Cornell University Press, 1992. Read More
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