Bellini and the East
April, 12 2006-June, 25 2006
The National Gallery, London
In 1453 the Ottoman Turks conquered Constantinople, capital of the Christian Byzantine Empire. This focused exhibition will examine images of the Muslim and Christian Eastern Mediterranean that were produced subsequently by the great Venetian painters Gentile and Giovanni Bellini.
Gentile Bellini spent some time in Istanbul as the guest of Sultan Mehmet II, and was fascinated by the Sultan's court and city. The work reflects their knowledge of an
d sympathetic interest in both Byzantium, and the Islamic civilisation that followed it.
Highlights of the exhibition will include paintings and drawings produced by artists working in both European and Islamic traditions, including the exquisite 'Seated Scribe'.