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Mostly Modern Miniatures: Classical Persian Painting In The Early Twentieth Century

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Chapter Summary

Throughout his various writings on Persian painting published from the mid-1990s onwards, Oleg Grabar has explored the place of the medium in traditional Persian culture and expounded on its historiography, including the role played by private collections, museums, and exhibitions in furthering public appreciation and scholarly study of Persian miniatures. This chapter looks at the Princeton and Philadelphia works in some detail. This examination gives precedence to and focuses at length on the Garrett Khamsa manuscript, since it has the more extensive pictorial program and a somewhat complicated codicology that sheds light on its original production and later history. The paintings are then discussed collectively, with an emphasis on their salient iconographic and stylistic features and artistic sources, and with the goal of locating these works, and more particularly their artist and his working method and aesthetic, in art-historical time and place.

Keywords: Garrett Khamsa manuscript; Oleg Grabar; Persian miniatures; Persian painting; Philadelphia works; Princeton works; traditional Persian culture



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