Wendy Shaw, Professor of Islamic Art History at the Free University of Berlin, reflects on the importance of art history as a discipline, and explores its universal value as a way to engage with the different narratives that shape our history. Ultimately, Shaw reaffirms the importance of art history as a way to gain different perspectives on the world.


Wendy M. K. Shaw’s work focuses on the impact of coloniality on art-related institutions, modern art and pre-modern discourses of perception, with emphasis on the Ottoman Empire and regions of Islamic hegemony. She has written Possessors and Possessed: Museums, Archaeology, and the Visualisation of History in the Late Ottoman Empire (University of California Press, 2003), Ottoman Painting: Reflections of Western Art from the Ottoman Empire to the Turkish Republic (IB Tauris, 2011), and What is “Islamic” Art: Between Religion and Perception (Cambridge University Press).

This podcast is part of Converging Paths, a partnership with Asia House, kindly supported by the Altajir Trust, and the Aga Khan Trust for Culture’s Education Programme.