Aqa Riza (Iranian, born ca. 1560, active until ca. 1621)
Tempera and gilt paint on paper
7 1/8 x 4 11/16 in. (18.1 x 11.9 cm)
Purchase, Francis M. Weld Gift, 1950 (50.164)
The artist Riza cAbbasi, working at the court of Shah cAbbas, revolutionized Persian painting and drawing with his development of the calligraphic line and an innovative palette. His influence on succeeding generations of artists was incalculable. Here the lovers are inextricably bound together, merged volumes confined within one outline. The result is striking but not necessarily comfortable, perhaps reflecting the artist's own discomfort with the constraints imposed by life at court.