This carved plaster panel comes from an elaborately decorated house excavated at Nishapur, which had panels decorating the lower part of the wall (called the dado) in several rooms. The panels were originally painted in bright yellows, reds, and blues, with equally colorful murals on the plaster walls above. However, once the excavated panels were exposed to air, the bright colors quickly disappeared. It appears that to create these dado panels, a thin layer of stucco was applied to the wall and the design was sketched out using a compass and other drawing tools. Then the design was carved into the surface by hand. This is different from the findings at other sites, where it appears that large panels of stucco were made from a mold and then attached to the wall with the designs already impressed on them.
1936, excavated at Sabz Pushan in Nishapur, Iran by the Metropolitan Museum of Art's expedition; 1937, acquired by the Museum in the division of finds
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