The Arts of the Islamic World auction to be held at Sotheby’s, London, on April 9th 2014 is led by a magnificent Qajar royal portrait of Fath ‘Ali Shah. Estimated at £1,500,000 – £2,500,000, this life-size portrait is one of sixteen that are recorded, of which only four are present in Western museum collections. Fath ‘Ali Shah was the pre-eminent Qajar emperor of Persia and, as a key patron of the arts, he commissioned a number of monumental portraits, using these images as tools of propaganda, immortalising his rule. This painting is attributed to Mihr ‘Ali, one of the preferred painters of the Qajar court.
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