Skip navigation

Copyright © Deborah M. Zajac. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

For this week’s Thursday Doors I have returned to my NYC trip files to share another ancient door panel from the MET (Metropolitan Museum of Art).

The plaque beside the panel says:

Carved Door Panel

Present-day Uzbekistan, Samarquand, Timurid period

(1370-1507), late 15th century

Wood (cypress); carved, with traces of paint

Culture- Islamic

H-82 in (208.3 cm)
W- 30 3/4in (78.1cm)
D-2 1/2in (6.4cm)
Wt. – 127 lbs. (57.6kg)
Made in Present-day Uzbekistan, Samarqand

This door is said to have been found in a secular building in Khokand, in present-day Uzbekistan. The intricate carvings of the interlaced vine scrolls seen here may be compared to similar relief decoration in stone carvings of the fifteenth century and to contemporary manuscript illuminations. The establishment of royal workshops throughout Iran during the fifteenth century fueled a unity of design across media, resulting in the emergence of common regional design vocabularies.

Carved Panel Door

Nikon Df| Nikkor 28-105mm| Delkin Digital Film| PS CC 2015.5

This post is part of Norm 2.0’s Thursday Doors.  If you love doors and would like to see the doors others are posting, or post doors you’ve photographed and join other door lovers from around the world click here.

At the end of Norm’s latest Thursday Door post is a little Blue Link-up/View button click it to be taken to a page with all the links to view all the posts, and add your own if you’re a door enthusiast too.

More to come…





  1. What a gorgeous door!

  2. wow!! beautiful image. Imagine the work that went into this.

  3. I also think it would make a good window…. 🙂

  4. Beautiful shot!


  5. Your work is quite beautiful. I liked the Mt Tam night sky. I used to live in Marin and Mt Tam became a part of life. Thanks for the visit.

  6. This is phenomenal – thanks for sharing

  7. Love it, Deborah, both as a history buff and a Thursday Doors participant.


  8. That is some impressive carving! Beautiful door! 🙂

  9. Wow, very impressive! And a unique entry in this series.

  10. Beautiful artwork on that door. The Muslim culture was known for their great artwork and preserving this was very fortuitous.

    • Thank you Gordon! I’m so glad someone thought it was worth saving and showing in a museum too!

  11. Amazing details! Wow!

  12. I’m simply blown away by the craftsmanship that went into creating something like this.

  13. intriguing, indeed. i really enjoy how you captured the door in display (including that it is no longer serving the purpose for which it was designed).

  14. Amazing -what a treasure! Your trip to New York was certainly worth in being able to see all these treasures (of course, aside from seeing your sisters:) Maybe I’m not quite clear how it traveled from Iran to Uzbekistan

    • Thank you Jean! The trip was amazing! I hope we do it again one year.

      Isn’t it wonderful that this door was saved and put in a museum for us to wonder? Your guess is as good as mine as to how the panel found its way to Uzbekistan. Perhaps the carver moved there? Perhaps merchants with great wagons, or caravans of camels with their backs strapped with sacks of stuff, and pulling goods traveled all over the middle east selling their goods?

      The imagination does wander and ponder doesn’t it? 🙂

      • You have great imagination! Have a lovely weekend:)

  15. Such intricate carving. I can only imagine how much patience and skill it must have taken to create such an amazing door. Beautiful photograph, Deborah.

  16. It fascinates me that they unified their design across media, including doors! This is just gorgeous.

  17. Oh my goodness the scroll work….
    Among other tools, I sell scroll saws so I KNOW that with an electric saw today this would require a skilled scroller at least 150 hours of work. I can only imagine it would be 5-6 times as many hours if done with the manual saws available at the time. The patience, dedication, and skill of these craftsmen blows me away.

  18. Amazing door

  19. Wow! What a specimen!

  20. Wow, that’s incredible. Imagine carving so much detail! It makes me think it was an ancient version of a screen door. Perhaps the door from an inner courtyard to the outdoors, or something so garden-like. I can imagine a woman saying, “I want something that lets in a bit of air and sun, but still provides a barrier.” This one really piques my interest and gets my imagination going.

    • Oh, I like those thoughts! In the cool mornings, and late evenings in the desert any breeze coming through this panel was probably most welcome!

      Thank you for the comment and sharing your thoughts!

  21. Incredible door!

  22. Thanks for sharing the information about that panel, Deborah. It’s hard for me to think about doing that work today, with modern equipment. I can’t imagine doing it by hand back then!

  23. Fabulous door but I was also looking at it and thinking it would look good on a window where the light could peak through. Nice one. 🙂

A penny for your thoughts...

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: