Islamic Art at Doris Duke's Shangri La Playing with Form and Pattern

Carol Bier, David K. Masunaga

Shangri La is the historic home of Doris Duke in Honolulu. It is filled with installations of Islamic tilework and other arts. Open to the public in late 2002, by reservation for tours arranged through the Honolulu Academy of Arts, today this home serves as a museum in which a walking tour can provide extraordinary visual opportunities for the study of geometry and pattern both in the arts that are installed and exhibited, and in the surrounding plantings and landscape. The house offers a plethora of educational opportunities, for which its full potential has not yet been tapped. A new initiative in 2004 afforded us the possibility of collaboration during a two-week scholarly residency, which we wish to share in this paper and presentation. What we offer here is a sampling of what we encountered through photographic documentation, analysis, and discussion.