Posted March 29th 2011 at 11:29 am by
in Photo Journals, Street Scenes of Istanbul

Ablutions at the Blue Mosque

Istanbul_ManMosque Sultan Ahmed, March 2009

This businessman is performing ablutions outside the Blue Mosque before mid-day prayers. His neat shirt, coat, and shoes shone against the marble arcade.  I was fascinated with fountains and water in the city and its integration into daily life. The city’s gravity-fed water system dates back to 375 AD, supplied by groundwater beneath the Belgrade Forest north of the city, now facing the stresses of urbanization and climate change.

Linda Ciesielski is a recent graduate of the MIT’s Dept. of Urban Studies and Planning, where she received her Masters in City Planning with a focus in Environmental Policy and Planning. She received a B.S. in Landscape Architecture from Cornell University in 2005. This trip was her first time in Istanbul. For further inquiries about the work please contact

One response to “Ablutions at the Blue Mosque”

  1. dorothy bloom says:

    The man is any man, and as he allows this ancient water to pass over his skin, so his spirit is refreshed and renewed, simply by-passing trivial religious detail.