Visiting Scholar Seminar: Ali Uzay Peker

On the Architecture of the Baroque Period in Turkey from the Perspective of East-West Relations and Social Transformations
Seminar, 3 March 2000

Visiting Scholar Ali Uzay Peker presents his research.

This comparative research on the architecture of the Ottoman Westernisation period and European Baroque had a primary aim to clarify the nature of the Western infiltration of forms and motifs to Ottoman architecture. To this end, the published accounts of Western travellers held by the CCA Library informed my ideas on Ottoman architecture, daily life and customs. To read the almost untouched pages of Choiseul-Gouffier’s Voyage pittoresque de la Grèce (1782-[1822]), which contains considerable material on Ottoman lands, was a special treat. A new idea on the nature of so-called Ottoman Baroque architecture shifted the dates of the period and even suggested that eighteenth-century Ottoman architecture should be renamed. The term “Occidentalism,” denotes the new tendencies that were prevalent in this era of Ottoman architecture.

Ali Uzay Peker completed his M.A. in Art History from Bosphorus University and received a Ph.D. in Architectural History from Istanbul Technical University with a dissertation: A Study of Meaning in Anatolian Seljukid Monumental Architecture based on Cosmology. He teaches Islamic and Turkish Art and Architectural history at the Middle East Technical University in Ankara. He has lectured and published a number of articles on Seljukid, Ottoman Art and Architecture, and the iconography and symbolism in the arts and architecture of the Middle Ages in Anatolia. Recently, he has extended his field of research to the socio-political and aesthetic dimension of Ottoman architecture in the 18th century.

Ali Uzay Peker was a Visiting Scholar at the CCA in 1999-2000.


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