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"Shah Jahan on Horseback", Folio from the Shah Jahan Album

Artist:
Painting by Payag (Indian, active ca. 1591–1658)
Calligrapher:
Mir 'Ali Haravi (d. ca. 1550)
Object Name:
Album leaf
Date:
verso: ca. 1630; recto: ca. 1530–50
Geography:
India
Culture:
Islamic
Medium:
Ink, opaque watercolor, and gold on paper
Dimensions:
H. 15 5/16 in. (38.9 cm) W. 10 1/8 in. (25.7 cm)
Classification:
Codices
Credit Line:
Purchase, Rogers Fund and The Kevorkian Foundation Gift, 1955
Accession Number:
55.121.10.21
On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 463
Payag worked for the emperors Akbar, Jahangir, and Shah Jahan over the course of a remarkably long, seven-decade career, and his brother Balchand was also a talented painter with whom he collaborated on a handful of paintings. The attribution of this portrait to Payag, written in the border below the painting by Shah Jahan, was recently confirmed by the discovery of a microscopic signature on the golden tip of the emperor’s bow.
Signature: 55.121.10.21 recto:
In Persian, last line of calligraphy: The poor sinner 'Ali the scribe.
Microscopic signature of Payag on the golden tip of the emperor’s bow.

Inscription: Inscription in Persian in nasta‘liq script:
عمل پایاگ
Work of Payag
Jack S. Rofe, Scotland (1929; sale, Sotheby's, London,December 12, 1929, to Kevorkian); [ Hagop Kevorkian, New York, from 1929]; [ Kevorkian Foundation, New York, until 1955; gift and sale to MMA]
Welch, Stuart Cary, Annemarie Schimmel, Marie Lukens Swietochowski, and Wheeler M. Thackston. The Emperors' Album: Images of Mughal India. New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 1987. no. nos. 59, 60, pp. 202-205, ill., verso pl. 59 (color); recto pl. 60 (b/w).

Beach, Milo C., Eberhard Fischer, and B.N. Goswamy. Masters of Indian Painting. Vol. Vols. I, II. Zurich, Switzerland: Artibus Asiae Publishers, 2011. vol. I, pp. 322, 329, ill. fig. 6 (color).

Haidar, Navina, and Courtney Stewart. "Jewels from the Al-Thani Collection." In Treasures from India. New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 2014. p. 80, ill. (color).

de Montebello, Philippe, and Kathleen Howard, ed. The Metropolitan Museum of Art Guide. 6th ed. New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 1992. p. 329, ill. fig. 40 (color).

Okada, Amina. Imperial Mughal Painters: Indian Miniatures from the Sixteenth and Seventeenth Centuries. Paris: Flammarion, 1992. p. 211, ill. fig. 248 (b/w), verso.

Crill, Rosemary, and Kapil Jariwala. The Indian Portrait, 1560–1860. London: National Portrait Gallery, London, 2010. p. 29, ill. fig. 5.

Stronge, Susan, Khushwant Singh, Nikky-Guninder Kaur Singh, Patwant Singh, A. S. Melikian-Chirvani, B. N. Goswamy, Rosemary Crill, Ian Knight, David Jones, B. N. Goswamy, F. S. Aijazuddin, and Divia Patel. The Arts of the Sikh Kingdoms, edited by Susan Stronge. Victoria & Albert Museum, London, 1999. no. 27, p. 64, ill. pl. 63 (color).

Ekhtiar, Maryam, Sheila R. Canby, Navina Haidar, and Priscilla P. Soucek, ed. Masterpieces from the Department of Islamic Art in The Metropolitan Museum of Art. 1st ed. ed. New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 2011. no. 250C, pp. 340, 358-60, ill. p. 359 (color).

Guy, John, and Jorrit Britschgi. Wonder of the Age: Master Painters of India 1100–1900. New York and New Haven: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 2011. no. 40, pp. 89-91, ill. p. 91 (color), p. 90 (color detail).



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