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Re: [Marbling] Few points.

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  • nihan buyuksezer
    Thank you. I only wanted to mention some sourches which agree on the 15.th century but ofcourse the details for different patterns can be discussed.
    Message 1 of 5 , Sep 10, 2010
      Thank you. I only wanted to mention some sourches which agree on the 15.th
      century but ofcourse the details for different patterns can be discussed.
      Nihan Büyüksezer

      From: irisnevins <irisnevins@...>
      To: Marbling@yahoogroups.com
      Sent: Fri, September 10, 2010 6:10:54 AM
      Subject: Re: [Marbling] Few points.

      Thanks for all this.... maybe we will never know fully, it would be nice to have
      all the information, but we can only go by the examples or written accounts we
      do have.

      Iris Nevins
      ----- Original Message -----
      From: Feridun Ozgoren<mailto:feridun.ozgoren@...>
      To: Marbling@yahoogroups.com<mailto:Marbling@yahoogroups.com>
      Sent: Thursday, September 09, 2010 10:12 PM
      Subject: [Marbling] Few points.

      Thanks to Oğuzhan and Iris for their comments on this issue.
      Thanks also for Ms. Büyüksezer’s comments on the history of marbling, on which I
      would like to make a few comments.
      On page 47 of his book entitled “The Art of Marbled Paper, Marbled Patterns and
      How to Make Them,” Mr. Miura describes the “Turkish marble” pattern. The
      names he provides do not exist in the Turkish ebru vocabulary; one never hears
      or reads of a design called “Taş Ebrusu” (Stone Marble).

      It is my understanding that Mr. Miura uses the term “Turkish Marble” to describe
      any pattern which resembles what is called “Battal ebru” in Turkish. However,
      another problem arises. The samples Mr. Miura provides on pages 47-49 are not
      Turkish Battal ebrus, instead, they are “veined” patterns. To my knowledge
      Turkish marblers did not use any of the ingredients (wine sprits, soap etc.)
      neccessary to produce these veined patterns.

      He asserts the pattern originated in the 15th century: however, he does not
      give any evidence to support his assertion, or any source for this information.
      In any case, they do not resemble the documented mid 16th century marbled papers
      made in Turkey. We also have no knowledge of any 15th century marbled paper
      made in Turkey.

      On page 13, Miura mentions F.R. Martin and H. Taherzade Behzad’s works’ on
      history of marbling . According to Miura "F.R.Martin describes marbled pictures
      created around 1500 AD”. We know however that Martin did not provide any
      evidence for this statement. H. Taherzade Behzad’s statement on the other hand
      is as follows; “Marbleized paper, called abri in Persia or ‘shadow paper’ has
      been used from at least the fifteenth century for the borders of pages, for the
      inside of bookbindings and sometimes for the page itself, the calligrapher
      choosing this as the background for his fine writing.” Unfortunatly Mr.
      Taherzade does not give any information or provide any samples to substantiate
      his assertion either.
      The images presented in Richard J. Wolf's book (Plate XXVI, 44-48) are "The
      simpler patterns shown on Plate XXVI are indicative of the designs that were
      produced in Germany from about the 1730's on...." (p.182). Here Wolf simply
      refers to the use of battal like patterns in Germany starting in the early 18th
      century, and not the creation of them in the 15th century in Turkey.
      As for the issue of the earliest ebrus; Richard J. Wolf states “There are
      reports, however, that a form of our modern marbling was being practised in
      Turkestan in the thirteenth century and in Samarkand, Herat, and other regions
      east of Persia in the early decades of the fourteenth century". (p.8). Mr. Wolf
      does not identify what reports he is referring to. In a related footnote (note
      33) he again states that "references to marbling in areas east of Persia at a
      very early time appear in several works on Persian art" but again he does not
      provide any references.
      Wolf's subsequent discussion in note 33 shows that he has been drawing
      information from books by Albert Haemmerle, Mehmet Ali Kağıtçı, and Uğur Derman.
      All of these authors, like Wolf himself, do not substantiate their claims for
      the dates and/or places regarding the earliest ebrus. For example, Wolfe says
      (p. 8) "In any event, ebru came to serve several important functions in the
      Selçuk and Ottoman Empires". Here Mr. Wolf is basing his information about ebru
      having been made in the Selçuk Empire on Mehmet Ali Kağıtçı’s article entitled
      “Turkish Marbling.” Mr. Kağıtçı states that “The technique of Akkase-Ebru
      (clear reserve) was applied upon request of the Sultan of Khorasan, Hüsseyin
      Baykara (1438-1506 AD) in Samarkand and Herad, and this technique was then
      improved by the Seljukide and Ottoman Persians."
      Since the Selçuk Empire had ceased to exist in the very begining of the 14th
      century Kağıtçı's account can not be correct. Hüseyin Baykara's reign
      post-dates the Selçuk Empire, the earlier Selçuks would not have been improving
      upon art forms of Sultan Husseyin's later era. Mr. Kağıtçı also fails to
      provide any evidence, or any historical marbling samples, for his assertions.
      Mr.Wolf is using Kağıtçı's account as a source, but a simple check on the dates
      of the Selçuk Empire would have revealed the error made by Kağıtçı.

      As Ms. Büyüksezer writes, “Albert Haemmerle suggests that art forms resembling
      marbling were seen in China as early as the Ming Dynasty (14th-17th Century)”.
      By making this assertion without providing any written source or any historical
      samples as evidence, Mr. Haemmerle adds just another rumor to the ocean of
      rumors about the history of marbling.
      Ms. Büyüksezer also writes "Chinese professor Tsuen-hsuin Tsien, who has studied
      the subject extensively, also believes that the earliest style of marbling
      originates from the Chinese." Prof. Tsuen-hsuin Tsien indeed supports his
      statement with a Chinese text, a paragraph from Wen Fan Si Pu, a book written
      by Su Yijian (953-996 AD). Papers decorated with the method this paragraph
      describes are called liu sha jian which means "drifting sand" or "flowing sand."
      Prof. Tsuen-hsuin Tsien concludes by saying "that is how marbled paper was
      done." I find this huge leap from liu sha jian to marbled paper quite

      I am aware of the scholarly efforts to establish a linear model for marbling
      history starting with liu sha jian in China, then Suminagashi in Japan,
      following with ebru in Turkestan, İran, and Turkey; and finally arriving in
      Europe and America as marbling. This linear model is not based on any datable
      sample of works or reliable evidence for linking liu sha jian to suminagashi,
      and suminagashi to ebru and marbling as we know it.
      It is easy to see that marbling did not start in Europe, as some suggested; and
      it is easy to say that we do not exactly know when and where marbling emerged.
      I am seriously disappointed by the efforts of many scholars and authors to fit
      the history of marbling into a model they hope is true but for which they cannot
      provide any evidence.
      History written without evidence is merely a story.
      Best wishes to all,
      Feridun Özgören

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