Photographer's Note

Gustav III, King of Sweden commissioned the Swedish architect, Olof Tempelman, to build a royal pavilion at the Hagaparken in Stockholm. In striking contrast to the staid neoclassical style of the pavilion lie the Sultanís Copper Tents, designed by the French painter Louis Jean Desprez during the years 1787 to 1790. Originally built as a set of three buildings for the palace guards, they make for a particularly distinct sight set in the massive greens of the Swedish park.
Itís mimicking of a Sultanís encampment, clad in decoratively painted copper plates, could be passed off as merely yet another Turquerie adaptation by the west. Similar to other aristocrats in Europe, Gustav was keen to embrace the wave of Orientalist culture (all things east, as far as theyíre concerned) that heightened oneís elite status in society: sophisticated and worldly.
As someone with a keen interest and eye for design, he produced many of the initial designs for the Royal Pavilion. The copper tents facades were only built on the side facing the main lawns- painting the desired image of an Ottoman Sultanís encampments by the edge of the forest. The middle tent was rebuilt completely by the palace architect after being destroyed by a fire in 1953.

Today, the copper tents house the Haga Park Museum flanked on either side by a restaurant and accommodation. The Hagaparken, founded and developed by Gustav III is the countryís first National City Park, the Pavilion and Sultanís tents, a national monument. Tragically, it was from this very pavilion that King Gustav dined and left for the fateful masquerade ball at the Opera where he was shot in an aristocratic-parliamentary coup attempt, succumbing to the wound 13 days later.

WS: wider view on Sultanís Copper Tents

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Additional Photos by Aleksandar Dekanski (dekanski) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 321 W: 129 N: 1567] (9421)
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