Publications

Book
Blessing, Patricia. Moğol Fethinden Sonra Anadolu’nun Yeniden İnşası: Rum Diyarında İslami Mimari, 1240-1330. Istanbul : Koç University Press, 2018.Abstract

 

1243’teki Moğol fethinin ardından Anadolu’da İslami mimari alanında yaşanan gelişmeleri ele alan Moğol Fethinden Sonra Anadolu’nun Yeniden İnşası, bu dönemde gerçekleşen karmaşık yönetim değişimlerinin, nüfus hareketlerinin ve kültürel dönüşümlerin mimariyi ne yönde etkilediğini ortaya koyuyor.

Bu dönemde inşa edilen anıtlar birçok amaca hizmet etmiştir: Camiler ibadet ve toplanma yeridir, medreseler İslam hukuku ve ilahiyat eğitimi merkezleridir, kervansaraylar tüccarlar ile seyyahlar açısından ticaret yollarını güvenli hale getirmiştir. Anıtlara ilişkin ayrıntılı gözlemler yapan Patricia Blessing’in çalışması, mimariyi çok katmanlı bir yaklaşımla ele alıyor. Anıtlarda bulunan Arapça, Farsça ve Türkçe yazılı kaynaklardan ve tarihsel fotoğraflardan faydalanan Blessing, bu sınır bölgesinin karmaşıklığını yansıtan Ortaçağ Anadolu’su İslami mimarisinin bir resmini çiziyor.

Yeni banilerin ortaya çıktığı, zanaatkârların komşu bölgelere göç ettiği ve yerel malzemelerin belirli bölgelerin simgesi niteliğindeki tasarımları dönüştürdüğü dönemi taze bir bakış açısıyla ele alan Moğol Fethinden Sonra Anadolu’nun Yeniden İnşası, mimari, tarih ve dinin iç içe geçen anlatımlarından beslenerek, Ortaçağ Ortadoğu’sunun karmaşık yerel, bölgesel ve bölgelerarası sınır kültürü hakkında kapsamlı bir yaklaşım sunuyor.

 

 

 

Blessing, Patricia, and Rachel Goshgarian. Architecture and Landscape in Medieval Anatolia, 1100-1500. Edinburgh : Edinburgh University Press, 2017.Abstract

 

Anatolia was home to a large number of polities in the medieval period. Given its location at the geographical and chronological juncture between Byzantines and the Ottomans, its story tends to be read through the Seljuk experience. This obscures the multiple experiences and spaces of Anatolia under the Byzantine empire, Turko-Muslim dynasties contemporary to the Seljuks, the Mongol Ilkhanids, and the various beyliks of eastern and western Anatolia.

This book looks beyond political structures and towards a reconsideration of the interactions between the rural and the urban; an analysis of the relationships between architecture, culture and power; and an examination of the region’s multiple geographies. In order to expand historiographical perspectives it draws on a wide variety of sources (architectural, artistic, documentary and literary), including texts composed in several languages (Arabic, Armenian, Byzantine Greek, Persian and Turkish).

Original in its coverage of this period from the perspective of multiple polities, religions and languages, this volume is also the first to truly embrace the cultural complexity that was inherent in the reality of daily life in medieval Anatolia and surrounding regions.

Architecture and Landscape cover image

Blessing, Patricia. Rebuilding Anatolia after the Mongol Conquest: Islamic Architecture in the Lands of Rūm, 1240-1330. Birmingham Byzantine and Ottoman Studies. Vol. 17. Farnham, Surrey and Burlington, VT: Ashgate, 2014.Abstract

This book is a study of Islamic architecture in Anatolia following the Mongol conquest in 1243. Complex shifts in rule, movements of population, and cultural transformations took place that affected architecture on multiple levels. Beginning with the Mongol conquest of Anatolia, and ending with the demise of the Ilkhanid Empire, centered in Iran, in the 1330s, this book considers how the integration of Anatolia into the Mongol world system transformed architecture and patronage in the region. Traditionally, this period has been studied within the larger narrative of a progression from Seljuk to Ottoman rule and architecture, in a historiography that privileges Turkish national identity. Once Anatolia is studied within the framework of the Mongol Empire, however, the region no longer appears as an isolated case; rather it is integrated into a broader context beyond the modern borders of Turkey, Iran, and the Caucasus republics. The monuments built during this period served a number of purposes: mosques were places of prayer and congregation, madrasas were used to teach Islamic law and theology, and caravanserais secured trade routes for merchants and travelers. This study analyzes architecture on multiple, overlapping levels, based on a detailed observation of the monuments. The layers of information extracted from the monuments themselves, from written sources in Arabic, Persian, and Turkish, and from historical photographs, shape an image of Islamic architecture in medieval Anatolia that reflects the complexities of this frontier region. New patrons emerged, craftsmen migrated between neighboring regions, and the use of locally available materials fostered the transformation of designs in ways that are closely tied to specific places. Starting from these sources, this book untangles the intertwined narratives of architecture, history, and religion to provide a broader understanding of frontier culture in the medieval Middle East, with its complex interaction of local, regional, and trans-regional identities.

 

 

Rebuilding Anatolia cover

Journal Article
Blessing, Patricia. “Weaving on the Wall: Architecture and Textiles in the Monastery of Las Huelgas in Burgos.” Studies in Iconography 40 (2019): 137-182.Abstract

This article discusses the relationship between textiles and stucco decoration, and the signifi- cation that this implies, in late medieval Iberia, focusing on the Monastery of Las Huelgas in Burgos. In the late thirteenth century, stucco panels were added to the vault of the Gothic cloister in this Cistercian monastery, built under royal patronage. These panels contain a range of motifs derived from textiles produced in the eastern Mediterranean, as well as in the Muslim-ruled cities of al-Andalus. Such textiles were found in royal burials, located in the church of the monastery. The stucco decoration stands in a complex relationship vis-à- vis textiles that were used for royal clothing. Without copying textiles exactly, the flexible medium of stucco evokes silk fabrics that would also be worn during ceremonial events at the site. Thus, a complex textile spatiality emerges that functions most readily with textiles present. Yet, this connection also works—by way of haptic evocation—when textiles were only present in the evocation rendered in stucco.

Blessing, Patricia. “Blue-and-White Tiles of the Muradiye in Edirne: Architectural Decoration between Tabriz, Damascus, and Cairo.” Muqarnas 36 (2019): 101-129.Abstract
In the second quarter of the fifteenth century, a new phenomenon appears in Ottoman architecture: tiles with blue-and-white decoration, associated with tile-makers from Tabriz. These tiles appear most prominently in the Muradiye in Edirne, completed in 839/1435-36. They mark the beginning of an aesthetic shift, away from black-line (or cuerda seca) tiles inspired by Timurid and Aqquyunlu models, toward the blue-and-white tiles and vessels of the so-called Baba Naqqaş style of the late fifteenth and early sixteenth centuries. The mihrāb of the Muradiye features both kinds of tiles, thus illustrating this shift at its early stages. Within the parameters of an international Timurid style, the artistic production of this period (tile-work in particular) has been considered an offshoot of Timurid court patronage in eastern Iran and Central Asia. In the larger context of the fifteenth-century Islamic world, however, related tiles and vessels were also produced in Damascus and Cairo. This article examines the tiles of the Muradiye Mosque within the framework of artistic centers, the movements of motifs, objects, and makers, and their impact on architecture in the fifteenth-century Ottoman empire.
Blessing, Patricia. “Presenting Islamic Art: Reflections on Old and New Museum Displays.” Review of Middle East Studies 52, no. 1 (2018): 147-152. blessing_presenting_islamic_art.pdf
Blessing, Patricia. “Architecture, Scale, and Empire: Monuments in Anatolia between Mamluk and Ilkhanid Aspirations.” Вопросы всеобщей истории архитектуры [Questions of the History of World Architecture, Moscow] 11, no. 2 (2018): 114-131. blessing_vvia.pdf
Blessing, Patricia. “Draping, Wrapping, Hanging: Transposing Textile Materiality in the Middle Ages.” Textile Museum Journal 45 (2018): 2-18. blessing_textile_museum_journal_introduction_small.pdf
Blessing, Patricia. “Seljuk Past and Timurid Present: Tile Decoration of the Yeşil Complex in Bursa, Turkey.” Gesta 56, no. 2 (2017): 225-250. blessing_gesta_yesil_cami.pdf
Blessing, Patricia. “Medieval Monuments from Empire to Nation-State: Beyond Armenian and Islamic Architecture in the South Caucasus (1180-1300).” Convivium: Exchanges and Interactions in the Arts of Medieval Europe, Byzantium, and the Mediterranean, Seminarium Kondakovianum, Supplementum, ed. Ivan Foletti and Erik Thunø (2016): 52-69. blessing_medieval-monuments_convivium.pdf
Blessing, Patricia. “Buildings of Commemoration in Medieval Anatolia: The Funerary Complexes of Ṣāḥib ‘Aṭā Fakhr al-Dīn ‘Alī and Māhperī Khātūn.” al-Masāq: Journal of the Medieval Mediterranean 27, no. 3 (2015): 225-252. blessing_commemoration_medieval_anatolia.pdf
Blessing, Patricia. “Women Patrons in Medieval Anatolia and a Discussion of Māhbarī Khātūn’s Mosque Complex in Kayseri.” Belleten LXXVIII (2014): 475-526. blessing-mahperi-belleten.pdf
Blessing, Patricia. “ Friedrich Sarre and the Discovery of Seljuk Anatolia.” Journal of Art Historiography 11 (2014): 1-20. blessing_friedrich_sarre.pdf
Blessing, Patricia. “Recording the Transformation of Urban Landscapes in Turkey: The Diaries of Kurt Erdmann and Ernst Diez.” Studies in Travel Writing 16, no. 4 (2012): 415-425. blessing_erdmann_diez.pdf
Blessing, Patricia. “Puttenköpfe – Löwentatzen: ein skulptierter Kamin aus Nürnberg.” Kulturgut – aus der Forschung des Germanischen Nationalmuseums 9, no. 2 (2006): 10-12.
Book Chapter
Blessing, Patricia. “Inscribed Identities: Some Monumental Inscriptions in Eastern Anatolia and the Caucasus.” In The Seljuqs and their Successors: Art, Culture and History, ed. Sheila Canby, Martina Rugiadi, and Deniz Beyazit, 2020.
Blessing, Patricia. “Silk Road without Fabrics: Ani at the Crossroads of Trade and Textile Motives in Architecture.” In Ani at the Crossroads, ed. Zaza Shkirtladze, 229-254. Tbilisi: Ivane Javakhishvili Tbilisi State University Press, 2019. blessing_silk_road_ani_final.pdf
Blessing, Patricia. “Urban Space Beyond the Walls: Siting Islamic Funerary Complexes in Konya.” In Tomb - Memory - Space: Concepts of Representation in Premodern Christian and Islamic Art, ed. Francine Giese, Anna Pawlak, and Markus Thome , 25-43. Berlin: De Gruyter, 2018.
Blessing, Patricia. “The Vessel as Garden: The ‘Alhambra Vases’ and Sensory Perception in Nasrid Architecture.” In Sensory Reflections: Traces of Experience in Medieval Artifacts, ed. Fiona Griffiths and Kathryn Starkey, 116-141. Berlin : De Gruyter, 2018. blessing_the_vessel_as_garden.pdf
Blessing, Patricia, and Rachel Goshgarian. “Introduction: Space and Place - Applications to Medieval Anatolia.” In Architecture and Landscape in Medieval Anatolia, 1100-1500, ed. Patricia Blessing and Rachel Goshgarian, 1-24. Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press, 2017.
Blessing, Patricia. “All Quiet on the Eastern Frontier? Early Ottoman Architecture and its Contemporaries in Eastern Anatolia.” In Architecture and Landscape in Medieval Anatolia, 1100-1500, ed. Patricia Blessing and Rachel Goshgarian, 200-223. Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press, 2017. blessing_easternfrontier.pdf
Blessing, Patricia. “From the Survey of Persian Art to the CIA: Donald N. Wilber and Ilkhanid Architecture in Iran.” In Historiography of Persian Architecture, ed. Mohammad Gharipour , 112-146. New York : Routledge, 2016. blessing_donald_wilber.pdf
Blessing, Patricia, and Maria Cristina Carile. “Architectural Illusions and Architectural Representations: Space in the Salerno Ivories.” In in The Salerno Ivories: Objects, Histories, Contexts, ed. Antony Cutler et al. 111-124. Berlin : Gebr. Mann, 2016. carileblessing_salerno.pdf
Blessing, Patricia, and Maria Cristina Carile. “Architetture e città mediterranee negli avori di Salerno.” In Gli avori medievali di Amalfi e Salerno, ed. Francesca Dell'Acqua et al. , 431-446. Centro di Cultura e Storia Amalfitana: Amalfi, 2015. carileblessing_salerno_italiano.pdf
Blessing, Patricia. “Allegiance, Praise, and Space: Monumental Inscriptions in Thirteenth-century Anatolia as Architectural Guides.” In Calligraphy and Architecture in the Muslim World, ed. Mohammad Gharipour and İrvin Cemil Schick, 431-446. Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press, 2013.
Blessing, Patricia. “Marcellus Coffermans: La Vierge au raisin, and d’après Jan Gossaert, dit Mabuse: Vierge au voile.” In La naissance des genres - La peinture des anciens Pays-Bas (avant 1620) au Musée d’art et d’histoire de Genève, ed. Frédéric Elsig . Geneva and Paris: Somogy, 2005. blessing-catalog-essays-geneva.pdf
Conference Proceedings
Blessing, Patricia. “Building a Frontier: Architecture in Anatolia under Ilkhanid Rule.” Cultural Encounters in Anatolia in the Medieval Period: The Ilkhanids in Anatolia, symposium proceedings, 21-22 May 2015, Ankara, ed. Filiz Yenişehirlioğlu and Suzan Yalman. Ankara: VEKAM, 2020. blessing_ilkhanids_vekam-small.pdf
Blessing, Patricia. “Brilliant Color in Brick and Stone: Tile Decoration as a Visual Device in Medieval Anatolia.” Light Color Line - Perceiving the Mediterranean: Conflicting Narratives and Ritual Dynamics, ed. Thomas Dittelbach and Agnes Sebestyén. Bern : Hildesheim, 2016.