Still life as a genre entered Persian painting in the late 18th century, when the artist Mirza Baba began to fill the foreground of architectural paintings with arrangements of oversized ripe fruit- a natural counterpoint to the lavish manmade wealth of palace architecture beyond (see S.J. Falk, Qajar Paintings: Persian Oil Paintings of the 18th and 19th Centuries, London, 1972, pl.3; ). Replete with the kind of imagery and insinuations expected of their European models, these paintings accentuated the richness and succulence of the fruit through exotic touches such as the Chinese porcelain bowls and sumptuous brocaded tablecloths seen here. For further examples using similar iconography see Sotheby's sale of the Berkeley Trust, 12 October 2004, lots 19 and 29; Layla Diba, Royal Persian Painting: The Qajar Epoch 1785-1925, New York, 1998, nos.64a-b, pp.214-15; and B.W. Robinson, Qajar: La pittura di corte in Persia, Milan, 1982,p.31, Falk (op cit.), pls.10-11.