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  • Water Conserving Landscapes I: The Water Efficiency for Public Information and Action Project (WEPIA) AR » CSBE
    Action Project WEPIA Water Conserving Landscapes I The Water Efficiency for Public Information and Action Project WEPIA AR مشروع حدائق الندرة المائية حدائق الندرة المائية 1 برنامج الكفاءة المائية والتوعية 2001 2004 بدأ العمل بهذا المشروع في شهر آذار ٢۰۰۱ وإستمر حتى نهاية عام ٢۰۰٤ وقد شمل المشروع على عدة نشاطات منها إعداد معلومات عن حدائق الندرة المائية باللغتين العربية والإنجليزية ونشرها من خلال الملصقات والنشرات والكتيبات وقد خصص مركز دراسات البيئة المبنية جزءا من موقعه الإلكتروني لنشر معلومات شاملة ومفصلة عن موضوع حدائق الندرة المائية وشمل المشروع أيضا تنظيم ورشات عمل تهدف إلى تعريف المشاركين بمبادئ وممارسات تصميم حدائق الندرة المائية وتنفيذها وقد تضمنت نشاطات المشروع أيضا تطبيقا عمليا لمبادئ حدائق الندرة المائية من خلال تصميم حديقة ندرة مائية نموذجية وتنفيذها كما قام المشروع بالمساعدة في تأسيس مستنبتات تشرف عليها جمعيات محلية وذلك لإنتاج نباتات محلية تتحمل الجفاف وتم تنفيذ مشروع حدائق الندرة المائية بالتعاون مع جامعة أريزونا في توكسن في الولايات المتحدة الأمريكية التي تعتبر من المراكز العالمية في البحث والتدريس المتعلق بزراعة المناطق ذات المصادر المائية المحدودة فريق المشروع مركز دراسات البيئة المبنية ديمة أبو رزق مسؤولة بحث وتنسيق محمد الأسد المدير سجا جردانة المسؤولة المالية داليا الحسيني مسؤولة بحث وتنسيق لارا زريقات المديرة الفنية هانية مرقة

    Original URL path: http://www.csbe.org/activities/water-conserving-landscapes/water-conserving-landscapes-i-the-water-efficiency-for-public-information-and-action-project-wepia/water-conserving-landscapes-i-the-water-efficiency-for-public-information-and-action-project-wepia-ar/ (2016-02-13)
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  • Page 2 » CSBE
    of Muslims Speaking of the reasons why he started learning Arabic Grabar mentioned that a key reason was that as a child he always was fascinated with travel books He used to pick up travel books and wanted to visit the places described in those books He always had an attraction to exotic things He even tried to learn Chinese on his own but failed In addition he was born to an academic family for which the notion of continuously learning new things was deeply instilled It was a family that paid much attention to learning a family for which learning was an essential ingredient of life Although it sometimes was hard growing up in such an environment Grabar is grateful for it and considers himself fortunate to have belonged to a world that viewed learning a necessity that one could not live without Grabar added that in his family everybody had to know at least four languages and the practice of speaking a different language each day at home was normal Grabar moved on to describe how his own life as a scholar serves to demonstrate the importance of fortune At a very young age he was lucky to receive the trusted support of a number of major scholars who believed in his abilities Another example is when at a later stage of his career he was trusted enough and allowed by the Syrian Department of Antiquities after the 1967 Arab Israeli War to continue excavation work in Syria at a time when the United States had no diplomatic representation in that country Grabar considers himself fortunate to have traveled through much of Afghanistan just before the country started collapsing in 1973 In addition he was lucky to have spent some time working in Iran before the 1979 Iranian Islamic revolution Grabar considers all of this true luck for if he had started his career at a later point in time he would not have been able to do all of that Finally Grabar believes he is lucky to have retired in Princeton where there are first rate academic libraries even though he believes it is a perfectly boring place in which to live Methodological Directions in the Study of Islamic Art Building on his long involvement in the study of Islamic art Grabar moved on to identify what he refers to as seven strands impulses attitudes or methodological directions in the practice and theory or assumptions regarding the study of Islamic art These are Orientalism archaeology collecting history of art history of architecture the social sciences and contemporary creativity Orientalism The first strand in the study of Islamic art is Orientalism which Grabar believes was essential in his becoming what he is The term has received bad press especially after the publication of Edward Said s Orientalism New York Pantheon 1978 According to Grabar there is much truth in Said s depiction of the negative image of Islam and Muslims provided by many of those who have written

    Original URL path: http://www.csbe.org/publications-and-resources/articles-and-lectures-on-architectural-issues/half-a-century-in-the-study-of-islamic-art/page-32/ (2016-02-13)
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  • Page 3 » CSBE
    from the Orient were extremely fanciful the work did have considerable influence as a general work on the history of architecture Grabar added that the novelty of archaeology in the 1950s was the development of departments of antiquities in different countries of the Islamic world which initially were often run by Europeans The role of those departments primarily was to maintain monuments It is their work that has resulted in the preservation of the Aqsa Mosque in Jerusalem which was completed during the reign of the Umayyad caliph al Walid r 705 715 but was subjected to many interventions since then the Tomb of Oljaytu in Sultaniyya in Iran 1306 1312 the monuments of Cairo etc There are masses of other activities in which those departments of antiquities also have been involved They carried out surveys Grabar mentioned as an important example the surveys that Robert McCormick Adams the former Director of the Oriental Institute in Chicago former Secretary of the Smithsonian Institution and author of the Land Behind Baghdad Chicago University of Chicago Press 1965 carried out in southern Iraq However Grabar believes that the most remarkable examples of these surveys are found in the ex Soviet Union There are surveys carried out in Central Asia during the 1940s 1950s and 1960s that kept track of every remain every site and every village They provide a remarkable body of work and one can reconstruct the topography of huge areas through those works These works did include excavations but the excavations had always posed problems because there is no critical number of sites for the development of criteria of classification and judgment as opposed to prehistoric archaeology where such a critical number of sites exists Grabar added that archaeology also has posed practical problems One is the low level of publication Archaeologists generally do not publish excavations This is because although excavations are fun to carry out ninety percent of what excavators find is of no interest to the vast majority of people In addition the cost of archaeological work has become very high Grabar mentioned that as a young scholar he could get by on small budgets that simply would be unthinkable today To a student or a young scholar archaeology offered and still offers a unique opportunity to do two things The first is to acquire total knowledge about a place in the sense that one excavates a place and therefore knows everything about that place Thus one is entitled to draw conclusions that most probably will not be contradicted The second is the contact with the land and its people When an archaeologist excavates he or she enters into the life of the place in which he or she does the excavation whether a village or a small locality of two or three villages and one is able to feel a country or an area This according to Grabar explains why a number of archaeologists were used by intelligence services Archaeologists often have a better knowledge of

    Original URL path: http://www.csbe.org/publications-and-resources/articles-and-lectures-on-architectural-issues/half-a-century-in-the-study-of-islamic-art/page-33/ (2016-02-13)
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  • Page 4 » CSBE
    consists of the mixed national regional ethnic cultural and universal museums that have sprung around Every country has to have its national museum What goes into these museums is a very interesting phenomenon and so is the way they are organized One problem with collecting is the distinction between private and public collecting and also accessibility Who has the right to collections Does everybody have the right to see a work of art or do collectors only have such a right According to Grabar there is a moral problem in collecting Does a collected item become a document for something else or somebody else than the collection or the collector How does one transform a collection into an account history If one does an exhibition he or she usually is saying This comes from collector A this comes from collector B this comes from collector C etc In other words one often starts thinking of the collector more than of the collected items History of Art The fourth direction Grabar mentioned relating to the study of Islamic art is the history of art Here Grabar discussed the issue of where Islamic art is placed in the manuals and books of the history of art Sometimes it is not included at all sometimes it is placed after Byzantine art but before real art begins with the Renaissance and sometimes it is presented as an example of Oriental art along with Chinese art In other words Islamic art has not entered into that automatic system by which the West analyzes or explains the arts One of the major activities that Grabar has carried out over the past twenty years has been to make Islamic art acceptable to the rest of the field of art history He mentioned there are several techniques that have been developed to handle this issue One technique Grabar calls the me too syndrome Every time somebody says we have beautiful buildings the other says we have beautiful buildings too every time somebody says we have beautiful ceramics the other says we have beautiful ceramics too There always is some reason to say I have that too In this context Grabar gave the example of the argument in Nikolaus Pevsner s An Outline of European Architecture Hammondworth Penguin Books 1942 where he states there is a history of Italian architecture but there is no Bulgarian architecture Grabar believes such an opinion to be unfortunate and strange to hear from an otherwise remarkable man Grabar added that every large enough group of people has its architecture It may not be great and exciting but everybody has architecture Another technique Grabar mentioned for handling the problem of excluding Islamic art from the field of the history of art is that of automatic inclusion According to Grabar automatic inclusion is something in which publications coming out of the Soviet Union used to specialize Nobody pays attention to Soviet scholarship anymore but Soviet scholarship had been a very interesting phenomenon for about fifty

    Original URL path: http://www.csbe.org/publications-and-resources/articles-and-lectures-on-architectural-issues/half-a-century-in-the-study-of-islamic-art/page-34/ (2016-02-13)
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  • Page 5 » CSBE
    in them and social sciences created a DOS through which we understand and feel so many phenomena Grabar added that he spent many years of his life thinking about the relation of the social sciences to art and that he wrote many pages of unpublished writings about issues such as how to carry out an anthropology of art or a structuralism of art Grabar wonders whether it is worth pursuing such attempts to understand art In this context he gave some examples of how the social sciences affected and may affect the study of art For example one can explain the whole history of art through a structuralist theory of anthropology according to which artifacts are perceived as being derived from underlying systems of laws which makes it possible to reproduce new artifacts similar to already existing ones that still would be considered authentic One of the main principles of structuralist theory is the emphasis on the meaning of a certain artifact rather than on its material entity i e artifacts are treated as signs According to this theory a sign has no meaning by itself but derives its meaning through its participation in a system of relations Therefore structuralists look for relational patterns between artifacts such as parallelism opposition inversion etc The most important pattern of relationships for structuralists is binary opposition In addition through sociology and also Marxism in part art has become a product in which many material aspects are involved Expressing admiration for a piece of art by saying how beautiful it is or how gorgeous it is no longer is the only way of seeing art Art has become a product that costs X amount of money to be paid for the materials through which it is made and for people who make it Here Grabar commented that the cost of things is something art historians have never worried about in earlier times Psychology is another field of inquiry that has a bearing on art According to Grabar for a long time the artist s pleasure had been a Victorian term about which people did not talk Through psychology however pleasure has become a subject deserving attention and study In addition one has the right to say that something is beautiful and something is not Today this can be proved people can discuss together what is beautiful and what is not beautiful and not do so simply because they like or dislike certain things There now are different ways in which one determines what the pleasure of seeing and the pleasure of feeling are Linguistics is another branch of knowledge that affects the way people see and understand art Grabar mentioned that this involves the phonetic division of structure which is easier to accomplish with architecture than with other arts For example architecture may be discussed as phonemes as with bricks and stones as morphemes as with a vault or a courtyard or as sentences as with a house or a palace Thus there are

    Original URL path: http://www.csbe.org/publications-and-resources/articles-and-lectures-on-architectural-issues/half-a-century-in-the-study-of-islamic-art/page-35/ (2016-02-13)
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  • Page 6 » CSBE
    that is not Abstract Expressionism and realized that they were drawing their inspiration from their own art He decided to do the same and he went to the Islamic section at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York to find out what Islamic art is and came to the conclusion that Islamic art primarily is about writing He therefore dropped Abstract Expressionism and spent considerable time and effort copying religious quotations and objects Grabar noted that this is not a unique phenomenon and it is the responsibility of art historians to show how much there is to Islamic art as a source of inspiration for contemporary artistic production Grabar added there are more important issues to consider when dealing with contemporary art One such issue is that of demarcating geographic and chronological boundaries for artistic production in the Islamic world He illustrated this point through a development that took place about twenty years ago which is the publication of the 37 volume Dictionary of Art London Macmillan Publishers 1996 in which he was involved The editors decided that the arts in this publication would be categorized by nationality i e French art German art Russian art Chinese art etc However this categorization could not be carried out for the Muslim world because most of the nations of the Islamic world did not exist before the twentieth century For instance what would one do about Jordanian art in the seventeenth century The editors therefore decided to use a different system of taxonomization for Islamic art separating it from national art except in the twentieth century and the pre Islamic period Accordingly in the case of Persia there was Persian art under the title of Persia or Iran until the Islamic conquest and then it is included under Islamic art until the twentieth century when it goes back to Persian contemporary art In other words as with the Turks who cut themselves off from their past by giving up the Arabic script there was a break a break was artificially created in those volumes Grabar added that perhaps this was not the most suitable approach to dealing with Islamic art but he is not sure which approach would be more suitable According to Grabar whether there was or should be an Islamic dimension to arts coming out of the Muslim world is something that has two tricky corollaries The first is whether such an Islamic dimension restricts the study of Islamic art to Muslims If the answer is affirmative then non Muslims would not have the right to deal with Islamic art because it is a restricted endeavor The second corollary is whether principles and ideas identifiable as Islamic in the past such as calligraphy and geometry should remain dominant today Grabar added that one may assert an evolution by which one even may have a non Islamic Islamic art which is logical in countries that primarily have Muslim populations Thus in spite of what generally is written one may consider

    Original URL path: http://www.csbe.org/publications-and-resources/articles-and-lectures-on-architectural-issues/half-a-century-in-the-study-of-islamic-art/page-36/ (2016-02-13)
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  • Page 7 » CSBE
    answer would definitely affect many issues relating to the study of Islamic art history particularly access to grants and fellowships He mentioned that he did not discuss in this presentation the nationalistic dimensions of the study of art history and he would be dealing with it in a meeting that will take place in Paris a month or so after this presentation Grabar believes that the politics of art are very interesting in the Muslim world In very recent years countries and governments have discovered that art has a value They therefore started creating exhibitions which usually are of an archaeological nature and intended to display the history of a certain nation and its unprecedented inventions and discoveries He added that the success of contemporary artistic production in the Islamic world would be when the Museum of Modern Art in New York arranges an exhibition on the arts of the Muslim world or the Arab world Grabar mentioned that he suggested the establishment of such exhibitions in Kuwait several years ago since he saw some wonderful paintings there Unfortunately the Kuwaiti authorities did not respond positively to the suggestion Another audience member raised the hypothetical issue of how the social sciences may affect the study of Islamic art He asked whether Grabar would have looked at Islamic art and architecture from a completely different perspective than what he has so far if the advances in the social sciences that took place during the second half of the twentieth century had taken place at the beginning of the twentieth century The audience member also inquired as to how the developments in the social sciences have affected Grabar s view of Orientalism and his stance on the critique of Orientalism made by Edward Said Grabar replied that he could argue that he ultimately has been disappointed by the social sciences which have failed to bring him what he expected them to bring The social sciences are useful for understanding the production of art as with the economics of art or the social uses of production but not for aesthetic judgment or taste However Grabar added that this may change On a related note he mentioned that he believes the application of structuralist theories to the study of art has failed Grabar himself has tried to provide a structural analysis of works of art but does not believe it has worked He mentioned however that it is possible that the experiment simply was not carried out correctly Linguistics is another science that Grabar referred to in this context According to him linguistics also has failed as a discipline to be of value to the study of art Grabar mentioned that one cannot explain a work of art or architecture through a system of morphemic or phonemic structures 6 Grabar added that he found the theory of pleasure absolutely fascinating According to him this is an area where there is a deep study by social scientists regarding what pleasure is and how one makes

    Original URL path: http://www.csbe.org/publications-and-resources/articles-and-lectures-on-architectural-issues/half-a-century-in-the-study-of-islamic-art/page-37/ (2016-02-13)
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  • Page 10 » CSBE
    Hijjawi al Qaddumi Cambridge Harvard Middle Eastern Monographs 1996 3 Hassan Fathy 1900 1989 is an Egyptian architect and writer on architecture He is best known for his work on traditional design and construction methods and materials His New Gourna Village project constructed between 1946 and 1953 which is considered his most important project is representative of his work methodology The project was documented thoroughly in his book Architecture for the Poor An Experiment in Rural Egypt Chicago University of Chicago Press 1973 2000 4 Mohammad Arkoun 1928 is an Algerian philosopher educator and writer specializing in the history of Islamic thought He is Emeritus Professor of the History of Islamic Thought La Sorbonne Paris III He has written extensively on contemporary issues of Islam and modernity in French English and Arabic His most recent books include The Unthought in Contemporary Islamic Thought London IB Tauris Saqi 2002 New York Palgrave Macmillan 2002 L Immigration Défis et Richesses Paris Bayard Press 1998 and Rethinking Islam Common Questions Uncommon Answers Boulder Colorado Westview Press 1994 5 Abd al Hamid Sabra is an Egyptian scholar and Emeritus professor of the history of Arabic science at Harvard University He is the recipient of the 1987 Kuwait prize in the field of Islamic studies His focus is on Arabic Islamic science and philosophy particularly the study of aspects of Arabic science in the context of Islamic civilization He has published on subjects including Arabic astronomy and logic theories of light and vision from the eleventh to seventeenth centuries and the cultural contexts of Arabic Islamic science Among his many publications is The Optics of Ibn al Haytham London Warburg Institute 1989 a multi volume edition and translation of the seven books of Ibn al Haytham s eleventh century Optics 6 In spite of Grabar

    Original URL path: http://www.csbe.org/publications-and-resources/articles-and-lectures-on-architectural-issues/half-a-century-in-the-study-of-islamic-art/page-40/ (2016-02-13)
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