This simple jewelry box features a delicately hand painted image of an oriental market and coffee shop as often depicted in orientalist art. It is also adorned with geometric arabesque patterns, borrowing from traditional art styles from the Mamluk era. These harmonious patterns and ornaments are Islamic artists’ interpretation of their natural surroundings.
The Arabesque art style emerged in Arab countries but was immensely popular in Egypt. Egyptian artists found inspiration in their natural surroundings. They used to depict natural elements on furniture and other items in geometrical shapes and patterns of circles, triangles, and squares to formulate floral or create patterns in an exquisite abstract way.