Art/ Collection/ Art Object

Youth and Dervish

Object Name:
Illustrated single work
second quarter 17th century
Made in Iran, Isfahan
Ink, opaque watercolor, and gold on paper (tinted drawing)
9 1/2 x 7in. (24.1 x 17.8cm)
Credit Line:
Rogers Fund, 1911
Accession Number:
Not on view
While the inscription in the drawing assigns it to the celebrated artist Riza-ye 'Abbasi of the Isfahan school, it is more likely by a pupil following the typical calligraphic style of the master. From about 1610 on, figures in Isfahan drawings and paintings have heavy pear-shaped thighs and wide, round cheeks. The subject of a youth paired with an older man, often a dervish or a poet, illustrated the relationship of the spiritual guide or 'pir' and his disciple, the 'murid'.
Inscription: Inscription: raqam-i kamina-i Riza Abbasi, jahat-i Sultan al-Fuqara Rahima Sakhta

Translation: Drawn by the most lowly Reza Abbasi
Made for the Sultan of the Poor, Rahima
[ Gustav Crayen, until 1911; sold to MMA]
Museum für Islamische Kunst, Pergamonmuseum, Staatliche Museen zu Berlin. "The Arts of Islam. Masterpieces from the M.M.A.," June 15, 1981–August 8, 1981, no. 82.

New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Persian Drawings in The Metropolitan Museum of Art," September 13, 1989–December 31, 1989, no. 33.

New York. Brooklyn Museum. "Light of the Sufis: an introduction to the mystical arts of Islam," June 5, 2009–September 7, 2009, no. 10.

Houston. Museum of Fine Arts, Houston. "Light of the Sufis: an introduction to the mystical arts of Islam," May 16, 2010–August 8, 2010, no. 10.

Schulz, Ph. Walter. Die Persisch-Islamische Miniaturmalerei. Vol. vols. I, II. Leipzig: Hiersemann, 1914. pp. 104-105, 164-165.

Grube, Ernst J. "from Collections in the United States and Canada." In Muslim Miniature Paintings from the XIII to XIX Century. Venice: N. Pozza, 1962. no. 111, p. 127, ill. pl. 111 (b/w).

"Masterpieces from The Metropolitan Museum of Art New York." In The Arts of Islam. Berlin, 1981. no. 82, p. 202-203, ill. p. 203 (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. 257, 267, ill. fig. 12 (b/w).

Swietochowski, Marie, and Sussan Babaie. Persian Drawings in the Metropolitan Museum of Art. New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 1989. no. 33, pp. 76-77, ill. pl. 33 (b/w).

Canby, Sheila R. "The Drawings and Paintings of Riza-Yi Abbasi of Isfahan." In The Rebellious Reformer: . London: Azimuth Editions, 1996. no. 43, pp. 209-210, ill. fig. 6 (b/w).

Akbarnia, Ladan, and Francesca Leoni. "The Mystical Arts of Islam." In Light of the Sufis. Houston: Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, 2010. no. 10, pp. 34-35, ill. p. 35 (color).

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