Smithsonian Magazine

“Worlds Within Worlds” at the Sackler Tells Stories Within Stories

As Akbar, one of the greatest Mughal emperors and patron of the arts, once said, “There are many that hate painting; but such men I dislike.”

Curator Debra Diamond would tend to agree. She is a driving force in gathering together the lavish Mughal paintings on display in the new exhibition, “Worlds Within Worlds: Imperial Paintings from India and Iran” that opened July 28 at the Sackler Gallery of Art. The exhibition features intricate paintings rich with color from the Mughal empire, dating from 1556 to 1657, and commissioned by the three greatest art patrons of the era—the emperors Akbar (1542-1605), Jahangir (1569-1627), and Shah Jahan (1592-1666). The Mughal empire extended across India and Persia, today’s Iran, and was led by Muslim rulers descended from Genghis Khan. Their rule linked Persia with India’s Hindu Rajput kingdoms. READ MORE

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