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D. Fairchild Ruggles

“The Anthology of Islamic Manuscripts on Gardens and Landscapes”

portrait of D. Fairchild Ruggles

University of Illinois at Urbana–Champaign, Garden and Landscape Studies Visiting Scholar

The term “Islamic” has been a subject of recent debate, from the 2011 renaming of the Metropolitan’s Islamic art galleries as Galleries for the Art of the Arab Lands, Turkey, Iran, Central Asia, and Later South Asia, to the thoughtful analysis of Shahab Ahmed in his 2015 What is Islam? My new project enters the debate from the perspective of landscape, asking how we ascribe religious or cultural identity to landscape, and specifically what we mean when we talk about an “Islamic garden.”

D. Fairchild Ruggles is the Debra Mitchell Chair in Landscape Architecture at the University of Illinois at Urbana–Champaign, with additional appointments in art history, architecture, medieval studies, Spanish and Portuguese studies, and the Center for South Asian and Middle East Studies. She is the art and architecture field editor for the Encyclopedia of Islam, and is the author of two award-winning books on Islamic landscape history as well as eleven other authored, edited, and coedited volumes on Islamic art, cultural heritage, landscape history and theory, and the arts patronage of women in the Islamic world and South Asia.