Title:A King Picnicking in the MountainsArtist:Artist UnknownDate:c. 1560Creation Place:Asia, IranCredit Line:Gift of Mr. and Mrs. C. C. WebberAccession Number:43.31.2
This luxurious work depicting a king and his courtiers picnicking in a mountain glade is a classic example of late sixteenth century Persian miniature painting. The exquisite, marginal drawing of animals stalking in the midst of lush gold foliage, the finely detailed and lyrically dynamic composition, and the decorative use of color perfectly define Safavid court taste. The scene is drawn from the Khamsa, or Five Poems, by Nizami (1141-1202). Since Safavid court artists occasionally worked for the Mughal rulers in India, this style of painting naturally influenced Islamic court painting in that country. For example, the Mughal painting Majnun in the Wilderness, also exhibited, displays pink mountain forms similar to these.