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    Sale 7571

    Art of the Islamic and Indian Worlds

    8 April 2008, London, King Street

  • Lot 240

    A QAJAR PAPIER MACHE POLYCHROME LACQUER QALAMDAN

    IRAN, DATED AH 1264/1848 - 49 AD

    Price Realised  

    Estimate

    A QAJAR PAPIER MACHE POLYCHROME LACQUER QALAMDAN
    IRAN, DATED AH 1264/1848 - 49 AD
    With rounded ends and sliding tray, the top decorated with scenes from the story of Sheikh Sana'an including images of angels and holy figures and with a line of gold inscription along one edge, the sides with pastoral scenes and the underside and vertical edges of the tray with a band of green and gold flowering vine, the top signed Mahmoud al-Sharif and dated 1264
    9 3/8in. (23.8cm.) long


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    The inscription reads: makhsus-e hozur-e sati' al-nur janab-e atabak-e a'zam sadr-e a'zam amir-e kabir damat ayyam-e shokatihi surat-e etmam padhiroft fi 12[64] (It was completed especially for the one who radiates light, His Excellency, the repository of Grandeur, the Most great Minister, the Prime Minister, the Great Amir - may the period of his splendour be ever-lasting - in 12[64] (AD 1848)).

    The Prime Minister at the time was Mirza Taqi Khan who received all the titles mentioned on this pen-case on 22 dhi'l-qa'da 1264 (20 October 1848) on Nasir al-Din Shah's arrival to Tehran to ascend to the throne. He is the most respected politician in Iran, the founder of numerous institutions including the Dar al-Funun. Through political intrigues, he was dismissed in 1268 (AD November1851), exiled to Kashan and murdered on 18 rabi' al-awwal 1268 (10 January 1852). (M. Bamdad, Dictionary of National Biography of Iran, 1700-1960, Tehran, 1966, pp. 209-21).

    Signed as: "Mahmud al-Sharif, the year 1264 (AD 1847-8)".
    Mahmud al-Sharif was from Qa'in and was a painter of portrait, flower and bird, and landscape. Apart from lacquer, he worked in watercolour and siyah qalam. His recorded lacquered work include three pen-cases dated between 1264 (AD 1847-8) and 1275 (1858-9), one depicting Ihtisham al-Dawla the 17th son of 'Abbas Mirza Na'ib al-Saltana, (M.A. Karimzadeh-Tabrizi, The Lives and Art of Old Painters of Iran, vol. 3, London, 1991, pp. 1134-5).

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