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Beauty and the East


Explore the new Textile Museum exhibition The Sultan's Garden with a series of lectures on the Ottoman Empire and modern Turkey.

In the Sultan’s Kitchen: Imperial Cuisine of the Empire
THURSDAY, OCTOBER 4, 6 PM
In this illustrated lecture, explore the influences of different regions of the Ottoman Empire on the imperial kitchens, which often fed as many as 10,000 people a day. As the Turks moved towards the Mediterranean from Central Asia, the cuisine slowly changed from meat, milk, and animal fat to olive oil, fish, vegetables, herbs, and fruits from cultivated gardens. Sheilah Kaufman is the author of 26 cookbooks including two on Turkish cuisine co-authored with Nur Ilkin (A Taste of Turkish Cuisine and The Turkish Cookbook: Regional Recipes and Stories). This lecture will be followed by a curator’s tour of The Sultan’s Garden.

In the Sultan’s Palace: Islamic Art at the Ottoman Imperial Museum
THURSDAY, NOVEMBER 1, 6 PM
The Ottoman Imperial Museum, housed in the Cinili Kiosk on the grounds of the Topkapı Palace, began collecting Islamic art as early as 1883 and displaying it in a permanent gallery open to the public since 1896. Dr. Ayşin Yoltar-Yıldırım, the Norma Jean Calderwood Fellow at the Harvard Art Museums, will trace the history of the Ottoman Imperial Museum’s Islamic art gallery and its incredible collection drawn from throughout the Ottoman Empire.

In the Sultan’s Gardens: Ottoman Gardens and the Decorative Arts
WEDNESDAY, NOVEMBER 28, 6 PM
Based on more than 30 years of research on the Ottoman garden and her definitive book, A Garden for the Sultan: Gardens and Flowers in the Ottoman Culture, Dr. Nurhan Atasoy, one of the leading experts on Ottoman art and architecture, shares how the Ottoman’s love for flowers impacted the decorative arts from textiles, to ceramics, to miniature paintings. Dr. Atasoy is Senior Scholar in Residence at the Turkish Cultural Foundation (TCF). This lecture is supported by TCF as part of the organization’s Lecture Series on Turkish Culture and Art.

In the Sultan’s Greenhouse: Modern-day Horticultural Treasures
THURSDAY, DECEMBER 13, 6 PM
Explore the plants of the sultan’s gardens with Holly Shimizu, executive director of the U.S. Botanic Garden in Washington, D.C. Known for a rich diversity of plants, many of the blooms grown in early Turkish gardens are considered modern-day horticultural treasures: wild gladiolus, tassel hyacinth, cyclamen, lilies, pomegranate, roses, and jasmine, to name only a few. The lush flora and fauna of these gardens also served as inspiration for the floral style in the textiles, ceramics, and art of the Ottoman period. Ms. Shimizu will focus on the plants native to Turkey and grown in early Turkish gardens that have found a place in our own gardens.

In the Sultan’s Studios: Recreating Ottoman Textiles
THURSDAY, JANUARY 17, 6 PM
Dr. Recep Karadag will share the results of the research undertaken with his team at the Turkish Cultural Foundation’s Natural Dyes Research and Development Laboratory that revealed the secrets of 16th- and 17th-century Ottoman dyers and weavers. Based on research of textiles from The Topkapı Palace Museum, Ayasofya Museum, and the Museum of Turkish and Islamic Art collections in Istanbul, the team analyzed dyes, yarns, structure, and technique used in Ottoman textiles, and can now create contemporary textiles based on historical processes. Dr. Karadag is Senior Scholar at the Turkish Cultural Foundation (TCF) and Head of the TCF Natural Dyes Research and Development Laboratory-DATU in Istanbul. Dr. Karadag is Senior Scholar at the Turkish Cultural Foundation (TCF) and Head of the TCF Natural Dyes Research and Development Laboratory-DATU in Istanbul. This lecture is supported by TCF as part of the organization’s Lecture Series on Turkish Culture and Art.

Each program is followed by a light reception and after-hours access to the exhibitions and museum shop. Fees: $35/members; $45/non-members per lecture. Five-lecture package: $150/members; $225/non-members. Advance registration required; call (202) 667-0441, ext. 64.

This series is presented in partnership with The American Friends of Turkey and through support from the Turkish Cultural Foundation.

 

 

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