Interior of the Hammam at the Red Fort, Delhi, Furnished According to English Taste

Object Name: Illustrated single work

Date: ca. 1830–40

Geography: India, Delhi

Culture: Colonial British

Medium: Opaque watercolor on paper

Dimensions: H. 9 1/8 in. (23.2 cm)
W. 12 1/8 in. (30.8cm)

Classification: Codices

Credit Line: Louis E. and Theresa S. Seley Purchase Fund for Islamic Art, 1994

Accession Number: 1994.71

Description

One genre of Company School painting served to record the wealth of the British in India, and their homes and furniture–as in this painting–were among the primary subjects. This painting also documents the unusual British practice of turning older buildings such as tombs or baths (as the title indicates) into residences. In this instance, the original structure is a domed octagonal chamber with an oculus. The dome itself has been decorated with a diaper-pattern grid. The walls below are articulated with recessed arches and a marble dado inlaid with red and green floral designs. The stone floor has been decorated in a grid pattern with central rosettes and a central inset that resembles a rug. To this basic structure the new owners have added a piano and bench in front of the window. In a niche in the arch behind the piano is a collection of their glass and stone objects.

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