Reading Objects in the Contact Zone
How to cite this chapter

Van Loan, Theodore: Multiple Temporalities and the Scene of Time, in: Troelenberg, Eva-Maria, Schankweiler, Kerstin and Messner, Anna Sophia (Eds.): Reading Objects in the Contact Zone, Heidelberg: Heidelberg University Publishing, 2021 (Heidelberg Studies on Transculturality, Vol. 9). https://doi.org/10.17885/heiup.766.c10402

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Published 10.06.2021.


Theodore Van Loan

Multiple Temporalities and the Scene of Time

A Pair of Wooden Doors at the Museum of Islamic Art in Cairo

Abstract Art objects are staged and stage themselves in ways that ex­press various types of time and duration. The pair of wooden doors from the Fatimid period discussed in this chapter are staged in a way that make the layered and fragmented condition of temporality central to the expe­rience of seeing them. This chapter unpacks these layers. It includes dis­cussion of epigraphic and stylistic dating, practices of conservation and display, and the visual impact of physical fatigue. All together these layers constitute a dynamic and fluid scene with the object as both an active par­ticipant and passive recipient in their constitution.

Keywords Temporality; Materiality; Islamic Art; Ornament; Museum Display