VIRTUAL COLLECTION OF ASIAN MASTERPIECES

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Mirror case
655 II
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Why this is a
Masterpiece

Slender musician is depicted against the window, facing the garden with lofty trees and buildings. She wears small cap with aigrette, thin long scarf of striped fabric, falling on the shoulders and back, fitted jacket, and loose skirt. Praising the ideal of female beauty, the painters created the images of languishing moon-faced belles in picturesque attire. The figured carpet is served with glass bottles, bowls and a tray with various viands and fruits. The painting was made in the early Qajar period (1785 – 1834) and is distinguished by exquisite subtle gradation of color and definition of impalpable niceties.

History of the Object
The mirrors were sheathed into cases of traditional square form. The mirror was embedded in the bottom of the case and closed with flat cover from above. The cover was fixed to the bottom with two metal hinges and shut with hasp or simply sunk into the case. Such articles were adorned with various floral designs or decorations with the subject matters. A maiden with kamanche in her hands, sitting on the carpet and reclining against the cushion is depicted on one side. Kamanche, a traditional string instrument, was very popular in Iran, so its images with characteristic lower part were often depicted on miniature pictures.

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Type
Decorative Art 
Materials
Pasteboard, opaque watercolor under lacquer 
Measurements
18,3 х 11,8 cm 
Creator name
 
Creator date
 
Where it was made
Iran 
Geography
Iran 
Time period
AD 19th century ~ AD 19th century 
Creation date
 
Function
Mirrors in Iran were not only toilet ware, but served as protection or amulet. Numerous folk beliefs, proverbs and omens were associated with them.  
Acquisition
 
Copyright
 
Acknowledgements
 
Owner
The State Museum of Oriental Art 
Museum
The State Museum of Oriental Art 
Credit line
The State Museum of Oriental Art 

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