A LARGE PAINTING OF THE RED FOR AT AGRA
A LARGE PAINTING OF THE RED FOR AT AGRA
1 More
A LARGE PAINTING OF THE RED FORT AT AGRA

INDIA, COMPANY SCHOOL, FIRST HALF OF 19TH CENTURY

Details
A LARGE PAINTING OF THE RED FORT AT AGRA
INDIA, COMPANY SCHOOL, FIRST HALF OF 19TH CENTURY
image 11 5/8 x 61 3/8 in. (29.5 x 156 cm.)
folio 14 ¾ x 64 1/8 in. (37.5 x 162.9 cm.)

Brought to you by

Hannah Perry
Hannah Perry Associate Specialist

Lot Essay

During the Rebellion of 1857 many buildings in the Red Fort were destroyed and so a large panoramic view such as the present lot is not just rare but of great topographical and historical interest. The walls, gates and buildings in red sandstone were mostly erected during Akbar’s reign, building on the site of previously existing Hindu and Lodhi period forts. the white marble palaces were part of Shah Jahan’s extensive remodelling of the Fort. From the left the painting depicts the Jahangiri Mahal (1570); the Khass Mahal with its two Bengali-roofed pavilions (1636); the Musamman Burj (1631-40); the Diwan-i Khass (1637); the hammam with its high tower; the minarets of the far Delhi gate; and the Moti Masjid (1650s).
This large panorama is very similar to one in the British Library from the collection of George Steell, who served in the Bengal Engineers and was posted at Agra between 1807 and 1813 (Ms.Add.Or.929; W. Dalyrimple, Forgotten Masters: Indian Painting for the East India Company, London, 2019, pp. 18-19, fig 7). The British Library panorama is watermarked 1803 but was probably painted about 1812. Another similar composition from the India Office Library and Records, watermarked 1816, is published by Stuart Carey Welch in Room for Wonder: Indian Painting during the British Period 1760-1880, New York, p. 113. Both paintings share a double black outer linear border, although the present lot has a thicker inner and thinner outer border which is the inverse of the British Library painting.
Another very similar panoramic view of the Fort at Agra sold at Christie’s South Kensington, 10 June 2013, lot 322 for GBP 22,500.

More from Indian, Himalayan and Southeast Asian Works of Art

View All
View All