Source Analysis : Mughal Era Painting Essay

1450 Words Sep 19th, 2016 6 Pages
Source Analysis: Mughal-Era Painting

Works of art from the Mughal period provide a first-hand account of what life was like back then. These masterpieces are important because they come directly from the Mughal time period, providing insight into how painters during the Mughal era thought. These paintings can provide political views, they can enhance our understanding of values and beliefs back then, and they can tell a story. The painting I will be analyzing is Bhima drinking the blood of Dushasana, taken from a page from the “Razm Nama” and painted by Abul Fazl. From a glance, the painting seems to depict a battle scene with two figures who look of nobility in the dead center of the painting which is the most prominent feature of the painting. There are colorful hills with trees sprouting from them surrounding the battle and there is a town in the top right corner of the painting. The piece is dated by Ackland Museum to be painted in the early seventeenth century from 1616-1617. Abul Fazl was Akbar’s most trusted courtier and best friend, so he had a very strong influence in the court of Akbar. However, Akbar died in 1605 so the painting was painted after the end of Akbar’s reign. Fazl was knowingly opposed to the leadership of Akbar’s successor, Jahangir, ergo he did not serve on the court of Jahangir. This painting seems to be a pursuit of Abul Fazl’s following his service to emperor Akbar. The Mahabharata had a very strong influence in the imperial circle…

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