Courtesans at leisure in the zenana
Ink, pigments and gold on paper
India, circa 1680 – 1720, Mughal Period
Height 27 Width 18,5 cm
Provenance: Formerly in an American collection
This charming scene is depicting courtesans in the zenana, part of the Indian palaces dedicated to women. This type of genre scenes was widespread in India during the second half of the 18th century, especially in Deccan and Awadh.
On the back of the painting is written a Hikayat poem in fine nasta’liq script signed “al-faqir Muhammad Baqir ibn Mir Ali al-katib”, meaning “The poor Muhammad Baqir son of Mir Ali the writer”.