Portrait of a Man

Attributed to Riza-yi 'Abbasi Iranian

On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 450

Despite the absence of a signature, this portrait of a man pulling a shawl around his shoulders bears many of the stylistic hallmarks of the artist Riza working at the court of Shah ‘Abbas I around 1600. The rounded cheeks and slight double chin appear on many of Riza’s paintings of youths, but the shape of the figure’s small "bee-stung" lips is nearly identical to that of several other figures from the same period. The fineness of the artist’s brushstrokes on which his contemporaries remarked is evident in the soft fuzz of the figure’s fur hat and delicately painted eyebrows. Even the gold x’s on his robe are specific to this period of Riza’s career and presumably reflect a style of that moment. Such paintings were made for inclusion in albums and were particularly popular in the seventeenth century when portraiture became one of the favorite genres of Persian painting.

Portrait of a Man, Attributed to Riza-yi 'Abbasi (Iranian, ca. 1565–d. 1635), Ink, opaque watercolor, and gold on paper

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