Blured domino

As seen on Flickr (Daniel Kulinski ) for this monstrous evil building. Original date: 2012-02-20 14:36:53

Tagged: , 1977 , Daniel , Daniel Kulinski , Daniel*1977 , EVIL , Kulinski , NX , NX200 , city , civic , creative , europe , image , imaging , less , mirror , picture , poland , samsung , samsung NX , samsung NX200 , samsung imaging , shapes , urban , walk , warsaw

floors

Taken with Samsung NX10

This super evil building was seen on Flickr by user Daniel Kulinski . Original date: 2010-03-03 20:46:24

Tagged: , samsung NX10 , samsung , NX10 , 10 , NX , ten , samsungimaging , image , texture , surface , warsaw , poland , city , town , civic , citizen , EVIL , urban , urban space , municipal , gettypoland1 , getty central europe , kuliński

Zanzibar doors (10)

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Perhaps the most striking and spectacular impression of Stone Town for its first time visitor is the magnificent wooden doors serving as prosperous entrances to the grand buildings.

The doors have become more or less synonym with the Swahili culture where they mainly are found in East Africa, Lamu and Mombasa (Kenya) and in Zanzibar. The doors in Zanzibar outnumber the doors, both in number and in grandness, found elsewhere along the coast, and thus being named ‘Zanzibar doors’. An inventory done in the 1980ies reported around 800 doors. Unfortunately has the number decreased, not only due to the diminishing of several houses, but also due to theft following the increased attention from international collectors.

The doors are manifestations in excellent craftsmanship, both technically and artistically. The oldest doors are often made out of Burma (Indian) teak, shipped all the way from Asia across the Indian Ocean. The shutters are made in one impressive piece and not mended together as is the case on newer doors. The Burma teak does no longer exist and the alternative has been the East African teak. Even this wood has become rare and difficult to find, often demanding a very high price.

The wealthy traders and house owners appointed skilled carvers brought in from India for the delicate job of arranging the entrance ornament. Their creativity is continuously at display.

In principal there are two types of doors found in Stone Town. The Indian doors, or Gujarati doors, with square shutters and made into smaller sections so that the door can fold together. These doors are to be seen along the busy bazaar streets where the Indian businessmen lived. The second type is called ‘Arab doors’, these doors are often found with an inscription in Arabic – most likely a phrase from the Holy Quraan – on the top frieze, and richly decorated around the frame. The older doors were all square at top. The semi-circular frames were introduced later, but are still referred to as ‘Arab doors’.

The custom of putting brass knobs on the shutters comes from India, where the knobs were said to prevent elephants from crushing the doors. Since there have been no violent elephants in Zanzibar the brass knobs were simply but there as a decoration and to show the wealth of its owner.

By looking at the lower part of the side posts and rough estimate can be done of the age of the door. The oldest doors have a symbol resembling of a fish. The fish gradually transformed into a shape of a pineapple and thus if the carving shows a clear and distinct pineapple the doors is of a younger generation. Another symbol that became part of the decoration was the chain-like row at the very outside of the whole door. The chain was said to protect the entrance from evil spirits.

(source: Zanzibar Stone Town Heritage Society)

This dark evil building was spotted on Flickr by user © Sam.Seyffert . Original date: 2010-04-12 19:57:36

Tagged: , Africa , Tanzania , Zanzibar , door , Stone Town , Swahili