- Identification and Creation
- Object Number
- Mirror Case with Scenes of a Baby Boy's Birth and Circumcision
- Work Type
- mirror case
- c. 1830-1850
- Creation Place: Middle East, Iran
- Qajar period
- Persistent Link
- Physical Descriptions
- Opaque watercolor, gold-colored pigments, and lacquer on pasteboard
- frame: 23.8 × 15.3 × 1.6 cm (9 3/8 × 6 × 5/8 in.)
lid: 20.9 × 12.6 × 0.4 cm (8 1/4 × 4 15/16 × 3/16 in.)
- Ezzat-Malek Soudavar, Geneva, Switzerland (by 2014), by descent; to her son Abolala Soudavar, Houston, Texas (2014), gift; to Harvard Art Museums, 2014.
Ezzat-Malek Soudavar (1913-2014) formed this collection over a period of sixty years. She purchased the works of art on the international art market.
- Acquisition and Rights
- Credit Line
- Harvard Art Museums/Arthur M. Sackler Museum, Gift of A. Soudavar in memory of his mother Ezzat-Malek Soudavar
- Accession Year
- Object Number
- Asian and Mediterranean Art
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- Rectangular mirror case with fitted lid. This mirror case is decorated with figural scenes celebrating the birth and circumcision of a baby boy. All of the vignettes take place on a well appointed porch with red drapery and a distant view of trees. On one side of the lid, a young woman has just given birth to a tiny baby. She is attended by a midwife, while attendants wrap the afterbirth. On the other side of the lid, a servant brings melon to two women who are seated on either side of the naked, smiling baby. On the back of the case is a circumcision scene.
- Publication History
Massumeh Farhad and Mary McWilliams, ed., A Collector’s Passion: Ezzat-Malek Soudavar and Persian Lacquer, Harvard Art Museums and Freer/Sackler Galleries, Smithsonian Institution (Cambridge, MA/Washington, D.C., 2017), pp. 60-61, ill.; p. 109, cat. 35
David Roxburgh and Mary McWilliams, ed., Technologies of the Image: Art in 19th-Century Iran, exh. cat., Harvard Art Museums (Cambridge, MA, 2017), p. 24, detail; p. 42, fig. 32; pp. 150-151, cat. 54
- Exhibition History
32Q: 3620 University Study Gallery, Harvard Art Museums, Cambridge, 08/31/2019 - 01/08/2020
This record has been reviewed by the curatorial staff but may be incomplete. Our records are frequently revised and enhanced. For more information please contact the Division of Asian and Mediterranean Art at firstname.lastname@example.org