CMA presents Art and Stories From Mughal India: Sonya Rhie Quintanilla, curator
Through Sunday, October 23, 2016
The Kelvin and Eleanor Smith Foundation Hall
The Mughal Empire existed for more than 300 years, from the early 1500s until the arrival of British colonial rule in 1857, encompassing territory that included vast portions of the Indian subcontinent and Afghanistan. The Mughal rulers were Central Asian Muslims who assimilated many religious faiths under their administration. Famed for its distinctive architecture, including the Taj Mahal, the Mughal Empire is also renowned for its colorful and engaging paintings. Many of these take the form of narrative tales that not only delight the eye but also reveal fascinating ways in which the empire’s diverse cultural traditions found their way into royal creative expressions.
The centennial exhibition Art and Stories from Mughal India focuses on four stories—an epic, a fable, a mystic romance, and a sacred biography—embedded within the overarching story of the Mughals themselves as told through 100 paintings drawn from the Cleveland Museum of Art’s world-class holdings. Many works from the museum’s recent landmark acquisition of the Catherine Glynn Benkaim and Ralph Benkaim Collection are exhibited here and published in a companion volume for the first time. Rounding out the exhibition is a selection of costumes, textiles, jewelry, arms and armor, architectural elements, and decorative arts on loan from museums across the country.