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News Archive, 2000

Reflections of the Fatimids
October 2000

Produced by the Aga Khan Trust for Culture in collaboration with the Institute of Ismaili Studies, Reflections of the Fatimids is a film based on the exhibition “Treasures of Fatimid Cairo” which recently toured at L'Institut Du Monde Arabe (Paris) and at the Kunstlerhaus Museum in Vienna. The exhibition brought together a diverse range of Fatimid artefacts from around the world for the first time.


The Fatimid Epoch is one of the most brilliant and extraordinary periods of Muslim Egypt. The creative vitality of the Fatimid period of history is expressed in monuments of astounding variety and beauty as well as many exquisite objects made from a range of materials from textiles, to rock crystal, wood and ceramic. Today, Fatimid artefacts are found in museums all over the world.
Bronze lion 11th-12th Century, Egypt Museum of Islamic Art, Cairo (From the catalogue of the exhibition Schatze der Kalifen held at the Kunstlerhaus in Vienna, Austria.)

The film presents objects in their historical context and is animated by sequences filmed in Egypt. Dr. Shainool Jiwa (who lectures in Fatimid history at The Institute) and Fahmida Suleiman (an IIS doctoral student in Fatimid Art at the University of Oxford) point out the importance of specific pieces. Enlivening the narrative further, are excerpts from literature evocative of the life and times of the Fatimids, maps and specially composed music.

Reflections of the Fatimids was shown in London, England in May and the film will be launched in major cities around the world later in the year.

View video clip [RealPlayer: 464KB / MPG: 7.8MB ]

The Institute of Ismaili Studies - Reflections of the Fatimids
Last updated: 11/2/2005 15:25