A list of useful, interesting and often beautiful books on Islamic geometric design, and also on Islamic art and architecture generally. Some of the books are no longer in print and might be hard to obtain.
Islamic Geometric Design is the first comprehensive full-colour art book on the subject. It has over 800 colour illustrations and photographs and presents the subject in a practical and historical content. It has an appendix with step-by-step instruction for over a dozen patterns. It is also available in a French edition.
Draw Islamic Geometric Star Patterns gives step-by-step instructions for several star patterns. It is available on Amazon, iTunes, Google Play and various other ebook platforms.
In 2013, I wrote an essay called Escher and Islamic Geometric Design in the exhibition catalogue for ‘Escher Meets Islamic Art’, held in Holland. Famous Dutch graphic artist M.C. Escher visited the Alhambra in Spain as a young man and made many drawings. These drawings are still around and it is fascinating to see the direct connection between the Alhambra patterns that caught his eye and how these visibly influenced the work he did in the decades after. .
Islamic Geometric Patterns is a practical book that shows how to draw many different patterns just by drawing lines and circles. It is available in English, French, Farsi and Turkish editions. The English edition is distributed across the world and is also available in online bookshops.
It comes with a CD-Rom with templates, illustrations, animations and much more.
Islamic Design Workbook is like an adult colouring book but more challenging, more educational and more fun. It contains 48 geometric patterns compositions, categorised by region. The book has 48 different loose-leaf pages that correspond to the patterns in the book. These pages have the constructions lines needed to make each pattern in the book. The challenge is to figure out which bits of construction line to trace and which bits to ignore. And then you can colour it.
Arabesques by Jean-Marc Castera.
Islam Sanatinda Geometrik Susleme by Yildiz Demiriz
The Topkapi Scroll by Gulru Necipoglu.
Sammlung Weltensand. The Journey by Elvira Wersche
Arts & Crafts of the Islamic Lands by Khaled Azzam
Cairo of the Mamluks by Doris Behrens-Abouseif
Islamic Architecture: Form, Function & Meaning by Robert Hillenbrand
Arabic Geometrical Pattern and Design by Jules Bourgoin.
Qur’ans of the Mamluks by David James
Mimar Sinan Cami Minberlerinde Besgen Geometrik Desenler by Serap Ekizler Sonmez
The Formation of Islamic Art by Oleg Grabar
Minbar of Saladin by Lynette Singer
And Diverse are their Hues by Jonathan Bloom and Sheila Blair
Islamic Art & Architecture: The System of Geometric Design by Issam El-Said
Islamic Art & Architecture (650-1250) by Richard Ettinghausen
Alhambra Stained Glass Coloring Book by Nick Crossling
The Art & Architecture of Islamic (1250-1800) by Sheila Blair.
Islamic Design by Daud Sutton
Islamic Patterns by Keith Critchlow
The Mediation of Ornament by Oleg Grabar