New Publication - From Granada to Berlin: the Alhambra Cupola, Anna McSweeny, 2020

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Submitted by Anna McSweeny

From Granada to Berlin: the Alhambra Cupola

Dr Anna McSweeney

Verlag Kettler, 2020


The new book by Dr Anna McSweeney – From Granada to Berlin: the Alhambra Cupola (Verlag Kettler, 2020) – tells the long history of the Alhambra palace through the prism of one of its most extraordinary survivors: the Alhambra cupola, a carved and painted 14th century ceiling which is now in the Museum for Islamic Art in Berlin.


Through a close examination of the cupola, it traces the long history of the Alhambra from medieval Granada to contemporary Berlin. It examines the methodology of object biography in relation to architectural fragments, while the loss of the cupola from Granada, its acquisition by the museum in Berlin and the complex reasons behind this loss remain central. Through a focused, chronological study with extensive new research on the object and the changing societies through which it moved, including many previously unpublished images, this book explores the material and cultural history of the cupola and offers a new perspective on the legacy of Islamic art in Europe and its continuing relevance today. 


From Granada to Berlin: the Alhambra Cupola is a Connecting Art Histories in the Museum publication by the Staatliche Museen zu Berlin, the Kunsthistorisches Institut in Florenz, and the Max-Planck-Institut.

Dr Anna McSweeney is lecturer in the Department of History of Art and Architecture in Trinity College Dublin, Ireland.

The book is available to purchase from the publisher’s website: