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Earliest Mughal painting

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CollectionsArthur Llewellyn Basham
Title: Earliest Mughal painting
Author(s): Barrett, Douglas E. & Basil Gray
British Museum
Photographer: Arthur Llewellyn Basham
Keywords: Indo-Persian Miniatures, 16th-17th century;paintings;photograph
Description: The earliest surviving painting of the Mughal school is a large picture on cotton of the ancestors in the male line of the Mughal house enjoying an imaginary picnic in the mountains seated in order of their succession. Originally Timur himself must have occupied the centre of the scene, seated in a pavilion with Humayun facing him on a slightly lower level. This painting, in a sadly damaged state, reached the British Museum in 1913 and it is agreed that it is almost certainly the work of Mir Sayyid Ali himself, some figures in it being directly derived from the work of his father (Mir Musavvir) and the whole style being in the early Safavi tradition. But the scale is unprecedented for Persia (it measures about forty-five inches each way), and perhaps echoes a Mongol nomadic custom of hanging paintings in the tent. The gold-painted sky and other colouring are Persian, and so is the illuminated frame of floral arabesques which surrounds it. But there is some slight evidence to support the suggestion that there was a vogue for paintings on stuff in India at this time
Other Identifiers: ANUA 682-2718


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