Art/ Collection/ Collection/ Art Object
{{img.publicCaption}}

Great Indian Fruit Bat

Artist:
Painting attributed to Bhawani Das or a follower
Object Name:
Illustrated single work
Date:
ca. 1777–82
Geography:
India, Calcutta
Culture:
Colonial British
Medium:
Pencil, ink, and opaque watercolor on paper
Dimensions:
Painting: Ht. 23 1/2 in. (59.7 cm) W. 32 3/4 in. (83.2 cm) Mat size: Ht. 27 1/4 in. (69.2 cm) W. 35 1/2 in. (90.2 cm)
Classification:
Paintings
Credit Line:
Purchase, Anonymous Gift, Cynthia Hazen Polsky Gift, Virginia G. LeCount Bequest, in memory of The LeCount Family, 2007 Benefit Fund, Louis V. Bell, Harris Brisbane Dick, Fletcher, and Rogers Funds and Joseph Pulitzer Bequest, and Gift of Dr. Mortimer D. Sackler, Theresa Sackler and Family, 2008
Accession Number:
2008.312
On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 464
This dramatic image is of the great Indian fruit bat (Pteropus giganteus) frontally displayed with one wing out-stretched. The body is shown in considerable detail, with the bat’s fur, eyes, curling claws, and wing veins naturalistically articulated. This work is closely related to another image of a bat painted by the well-known artist Bhawani Das, who was trained in Mughal miniature painting and commissioned by Sir Elijah Impey, Chief Justice of Bengal (1774–1782), and his wife, Lady Mary, to make extensive natural history studies at their estate in Calcutta. It was perhaps made by a follower of Bhawani Das who worked in a slightly more naturalistic mode.
Niall Hobhouse, London (by 2001–8; cat., 2001, no. 2); Niall Hobhouse sale, Christie's, London, May 22, 2008, no. 8, to MMA
"Thursday, March 22, 2008." In The Niall Hobhouse Collection. London: Christie's, London, 2008. no. 8.

"A Selection: 2008–2010." Recent Acquisitions vol. 68, no. 2 (Fall 2010). p. 44.

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. 285, pp. 342, 400-401, ill. p. 400 (color).



Related Objects

Two Sides of a Bengal River Fish

Date: ca. 1804 Medium: Pencil, opaque watercolor, and gold on paper Accession: 2004.176 On view in:Gallery 464

Cactus Plant in Flower

Date: ca. 1800 Medium: Opaque watercolor on paper Accession: 2012.410 On view in:Gallery 464

An Orange-Headed Ground Thrush and a Death's-Head Moth on a Purple Ebony Orchid Branch

Date: dated 1778 Medium: Opaque watercolor and ink on paper Accession: 2012.7 On view in:Gallery 464

Cotton Tree Flowers

Date: ca. 1800–1805 Medium: Ink and watercolor on paper Accession: 2016.489 On view in:Gallery 464

A Radish Plant, Seed, and Flower

Date: late 18th century Medium: Ink and opaque watercolor on paper Accession: 2007.289 On view in:Gallery 464