Spanish Spain, Silk; compound satin weave; Length: 42.6 cm (16 3/4 inches), Gift of Ugo Jandolo 32.195
With the Muslim invasion of Spain in the early eighth century came sericulture, silk-weaving workshops, and a sophisticated Hispano-Moresque design repertoire that left a lasting mark on Iberian fabric production. This textile fragment, probably woven after Christian reconquest of the region, reflects the artistic heritage of centuries of Islamic rule in Spain (711- 1492). The patterning of this piece, executed in characteristically strong, contrasting colors, exhibits a unique arrangement of elements common to both European Gothic design and royal Islamic workshops. Confronted lions frame a tree of life between scrolling patterns adapted from Islamic calligraphy and architectural arabesques.