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A selection of largely Damascus tiles from a private European collector is being sold by auction this November in London – mainly acquired from auctions and antique dealers in London and Paris over the decade between 1997-2008. Most are from Damascus and form a comprehensive archive of the range of designs produced in Ottoman Syria from the mid-16th to early 18th centuries. The collection consists of 40 lots with the high estimate for the group being £60,000.
Damascus tiles during the Ottoman period took their cue from the ceramics produced in the imperial workshops in Isnik, in Western Anatolia, but are characterised by their different colour palette, with fresh greens and blues, and more free flowing and informal expression of the standard Ottoman motifs.
The expert in charge, Arthur Milner, has also published a book on the subject, Damascus Tiles, published in 2015.