Art/ Collection/ Art Object

Three Noblemen in Procession on an Elephant

Painting by Venkatchellum (active 1780s–90s)
Object Name:
Illustrated single work
ca. 1790
Attributed to India, Hyderabad
Opaque watercolor and gold on paper
Page: H. 18 3/4 in. (47.6 cm)
W. 14 1/8 in. (35.9 cm)
Mat (standard size c): H. 22 in. (55.9 cm)
W. 28 in. (71.1 cm)
Credit Line:
Purchase, Friends of Islamic Art Gifts and Shamina Talyarkhan Gift, 2008
Accession Number:
Not on view
This painting of a royal procession is attributed to Venkatchellam, court painter to Mir Nizam 'Ali Khan, Asaf Jah II (r. 1762–1803), the Nizam of Hyderabad. While the landscape and background are only sketchily indicated, the men seated in the palanquin are depicted in great detail, down to their necklaces, of which every pearl is raised from the surface of the page. Leading the procession are rows of soldiers in Indian garb, while bringing up the rear are soldiers in European-style uniforms who carry muskets with bayonets.
Private collection, California (from ca. 1980); [ Terence McInerney, until 2008; sold to MMA]
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