Blog / Iranian Art & Culture / Persian Miniature

Persian Miniature

The art of miniature painting in Persia flourished from the 13th through the 16th A.D. centuries and continues to this day. Originally, Persian miniatures were commissioned as book illustrations for Persian illuminated manuscripts. Some Persian miniatures take up to a year to complete.




 By: Agha Reza Reza Abbasi 


 By: Kamal-al-Din Behzad 


Content and form are the fundamental elements of Persian miniature paintings. The themes of Persian miniatures are mostly related to Persian mythology, poetry and religion. Many of these paintings are quite small, but they feature rich, complex scenes which can occupy a viewer for hours.




 Shahnameh (The Book of Kings)'s Miniature Paintings 


 "The Court of the Gayumars", by: Sultan Muhammad 


A varitey figures are often depicted in Iranian Miniature. More important figures may be somewhat larger than those around them, and battle scenes can be very crowded indeed. Great attention is paid to the background, whether of a landscape or buildings and the details like plants, animals, the fabrics of tents, hangings or carpets and tile patterns, are the great attractions of the form. These delicate, lush paintings are typically visually stunning with a level of detail which can only be achieved by a very skilled hand of an artist and an extremely small brush.




 By: Hossein Behzad 


The bright and pure colorings of the Persian miniatures are one of their most striking features. Normally all the pigments used are mineral-based ones which keep their bright colors very well if kept in proper conditions.







 By: Mahmoud Farshchian 


Agha Reza Reza-e-Abbasi was the most renowned Persian miniaturist, painter and calligrapher during the Safavid period. During Teimoor’s era, outstanding masters, such as Kamal-ul-Din Behzad, contributed a new touch to the Iranian painting. The French newspapers published many articles in praise of this Iranian artist. Among contemporary artists, Mahmoud Farshchian is a world-renowned master of painting and miniature. 


 By (from Left to Right): Farrukh Beig/ Ebrahim Mirza/ Fathullah Shirazi 



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