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Lovers parting, page from a book of fables

June 30, 1556
Akbar 1556–1605

Lovers parting, page from a book of fables



Lovers parting, page from a book of fables c. 1590-95 Part of a set. See all set records Northern India, Mughal court, 16th century Opaque watercolor with gold on paper, mounted on an album leaf with inner borders of gold-sprinkled blue paper and outer plain cream borders (recto); ink on paper, six lines of Persian calligraphy (verso) Page: 36.1 x 24.8 cm (14 3/16 x 9 3/4 in.); Painting: 24 x 12 cm (9 7/16 x 4 3/4 in.) Gift in honor of Madeline Neves Clapp; Gift of Mrs. Henry White Cannon by exchange; Bequest of Louise T. Cooper; Leonard C. Hanna Jr. Fund; From the Catherine and Ralph Benkaim Collection 2013.303 DESCRIPTION The lovers have met in a remote wilderness location, away from the city shown in the distance. However, their affair has run its course, and they decide to part ways, each walking in opposite directions through an ominous landscape, where strange rock formations and an oversized serpent-slain by foxes gnawing on its innards-lend a sense of foreboding. As Mughal court painting developed into the last decades of the 16th century, artists began using increasingly muted colors and gentler shading techniques than they did in the more robust Adventures of Hamza at the left. The omission of a light source and shadows adds to a timeless, otherworldly impression to the landscape. INSCRIPTION Banyavati inscription in Devenagari script in left margin describing the subject of the miniature: 'We failed to understand each other when we were together, the understanding in that respect may come to us on being separated". INSCRIPTION Verso: From an album preface Persian text in nasta‘liq script: . . . and he also added illustrations and decorations and in truth an album was arranged that ever since the visage of rosy-cheeked beauties has been bedecked by their black sweet-smelling tresses, the like of the calligraphic lines that are written upon it have never been set upon any paper by a pen, and ever since the album of the sky has been illuminated by the luminosity of the moon and the sun, the light of the understanding . EXHIBITION HISTORY Main Asian Rotation (Gallery 245); December 31, 2013 - June 30, 2014. The Cleveland Museum of Art (7/31/2016-10/23/2016); Art and Stories from Mughal India, cat. 17, p. 190.

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The Mughal Images immediately took a much greater interest in realistic portraiture than was typical of Persian miniatures. Animals and plants were the main subject of many miniatures for albums and were more realistically depicted. To upload your images click here.

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