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Asaf Khan

Painting
ca. 1631 (made)
Artist/Maker
Place Of Origin

This portrait of Yamin al-Daula Asaf Khan was done by the leading Mughal court artist Bichitr and is dated to the third regnal year of the emperor Shah Jahan (r. 1628-1658). Asaf Khan was the emperor's father-in-law and one of his most trusted confidants, as well as his commander in chief. The painting, with its putti hovering in the sky and perspective, shows the thorough assimilation of European conventions into Mughal art.
read The arts of the Mughal Empire The great age of Mughal art lasted from about 1580 to 1650 and spanned the reigns of three emperors: Akbar, Jahangir and Shah Jahan. Hindu and Muslim artists and craftsmen from the northern regions of the Indian subcontinent worked with Iranian masters in the masculine environment of the r...
object details
Categories
Object Type
Materials and Techniques
Painted in opaque watercolour and gold on paper
Brief Description
Painting, portrait of Asaf Khan, by Bichitr, opaque watercolour on paper, Mughal, ca. 1630-1; on the reverse (IM.26A-1925) is a panel of illuminated calligraphy within ornate borders on indigo-dyed paper
Physical Description
Painting, opaque watercolour on paper, portrait of Asaf Khan, the father-in-law of Shah Jahan, with the Mughal army under his command at the time of victory. In the background is a landscape with a town. The putto hovering above his head bears a scroll dated to the 3rd regnal year (ie of Shah Jahan).
Dimensions
  • Page height: 38.9cm
  • Page width: 26.5cm
  • Painting without borders height: 24.7cm
  • Painting without borders width: 16.2cm
Half Imperial Mount (Portrait)
Content description
Portrait of Asaf Khan, the father-in-law of Shah Jahan.
Style
Credit line
From the Minto Album
Object history
From the Minto album, a collection of pages from Mughal royal albums sold at Christie's by Lord Minto in 1925. The pages were purchased jointly by the V&A and Alfred Chester Beatty and remain in the Museum, and in the Chester Beatty Library in Dublin.
Subjects depicted
Summary
This portrait of Yamin al-Daula Asaf Khan was done by the leading Mughal court artist Bichitr and is dated to the third regnal year of the emperor Shah Jahan (r. 1628-1658). Asaf Khan was the emperor's father-in-law and one of his most trusted confidants, as well as his commander in chief. The painting, with its putti hovering in the sky and perspective, shows the thorough assimilation of European conventions into Mughal art.
Bibliographic Reference
STRONGE, Susan. Painting for the Mughal Emperor: The Art of the Book 1560 – 1660 London : V&A Publications, 2002. 192p, ill. ISBN 1 85177 358 4.pp. 156 and 157, pl. 118 and details pls. 119 and 118
Collection
Accession Number
IM.26-1925

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record createdMarch 15, 2006
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