"Pair of Serpents", Folio from a Manafi' al-Hayawan (On the Usefulness of Animals) of Ibn Bakhtishu'
Ibn Bakhtishu' (d. 1058)
Folio from an illustrated manuscript
Attributed to Iran
Ink, opaque watercolor, and gold on paper
9 x 6 9/16in. (22.9 x 16.7cm)
Rogers Fund, 1955
Not on view
This folio exemplifies the impact of Chinese art on Iranian painting as a result of the Mongol conquest. The lava-like rock at the right and the tree with its knotty bark and twisted form are adapted from Far Eastern painting as are the limited use of color and pastel shades. However, the flat ground line at the bottom of the picture follows an early Islamic tradition, and the use of red as a background color for areas of darkness, such as the hole in the rock, is also a feature often found in early Persian painting.
[ Hagop Kevorkian, New York, by 1953]; [ Kevorkian Foundation, New York, until 1955; sold to MMA]
The Iranian Institute. "Exhibition of Persian Art," 1940.
Robinson, Basil William. The Kevorkian Collection: Islamic and Indian Illustrated Manuscripts, Miniature Paintings and Drawings. New York, 1953. no. VII, p.13.