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From The Educator's Desk Object Stories Uncategorized

Iran, Islam, and an Illumination: The Case of the Triangular Frame

Iranian, Shia devotional object: miniature painting mounted on a fragment of the Kiswah (covering of the Kaaba), Oil on silk
15.5 x 16.13 in., Late 19th to early 20th c., 1965.1.39, Gift of Mrs. Lloyd Gamble Cole.

In 1965 The Trout Gallery acquired a beautiful illuminated miniature featuring Ali, the son-in-law of the Prophet Muhammad.  Little was known of this miniature at the time, but in 2017 a visiting professor of Islamic Art approached The Trout Gallery about using the object in one of her classes.  During her session at The Gallery, she identified the image as devotional in nature, but found its format quite odd.  A bold green frame in a triangular shape surrounds the miniature, which is set against a black cloth background.  Why would a devotional miniature be framed in such a specific and unusual manner?  Follow this object story to learn the answer in the recorded lecture accessed through this LINK.

Note: this lecture was originally presented as a Dickinson College Alumni Webinar.



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