Like so many ceramics produced in Iran during the Safavid period, the style and decoration of this dish shows an attempt to emulate the highly-regarded Chinese porcelain. This is illustrated by the blue and white color scheme, as well as the distinctly Chinese imagery of pagoda structures and figures wearing local dress. Moreover, there is an imitation Chinese seal-mark on the base, which in Chinese porcelain would have indicated the dynasty and Emperor. That Iranian potters included this detail indicates the great lengths to which they went to make their wares comparable to the Chinese originals.
[ Klaus Hönisch, Munich, until 1967; sold to MMA]
New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "A King's Book of Kings: Persian Miniatures from Shah Tahmasp's Shahnama of 1528," May 4, 1972–December 31, 1972, no catalog.
Chicago. Smart Museum of Art, University of Chicago. "Blue and White: Chinese Porcelain and Its Impact on the Western World," October 3, 1985–December 1, 1985, no. 83.
Carswell, John. "Catalogue of an exhibition at David and Alfred Smart Gallery, University of Chicago." In Blue and White: Chinese Porcelain and Its Impact on the Western World. University of Chicago: University of Chicago, 1985. no. 83, pp. 142-143, ill. p. 142 (b/w).
Soucek, Priscilla, ed. Content and Context of Visual Arts in the Islamic World : papers from a colloquium in memory of Richard Ettinghausen, Institute of Fine Arts, New York University. Monographs on the fine arts, vol. 44. University Park, PA: College Art Association of America, 1988. pp. 260, 277, ill. fig. 31 (b/w).
Artist: Muhammad Zaman al-Munajjim al-Asturlabi (active 1643–89)Date: dated A.H. 1065/ A.D. 1654–55Medium: Brass and steel; cast and hammered, pierced and engravedAccession: 63.166a–jOn view in:Gallery 453