Art And Culture

Lacquer Paintings of Birds and Flowers

 A sample of traditional birds and flowers painting
 A sample of traditional birds and flowers painting

Iranian Art Museum Garden is displaying old paintings from Malek National Museum until June 20.

The exhibition “Simorgh” showcases 63 traditional paintings of birds and flower on manuscripts, coins, book covers and lacquer papier-mâché pen boxes (qalamdan), ISNA reported on its Persian website.

Paintings of birds and flowers are considered as one the major motifs in Iranian painting during the Islamic art era. Bird is a symbol of a lover who praises the beauty of its love, flower. The particular design was used in lacquer style on most objects and canvases especially during the Qajar era (1786-1925).

Lacquer painting is a form of painting with lacquer which was first practiced in China and Japan for decoration on lacquer ware, and later found its way to Europe via Persia.

The origin of lacquer painting in Iran goes back to late Safavid period (1501-1736) extended to the Zand (1751-1794) and Qajar dynasties. However, the style of lacquer painting was popular mostly during the rule of Qajar king, Fath Ali Shah (1772-1834), when the court generously supported artists.

Paintings included western-influenced pictorial scenes, the bird and flower design, composition of floral and spiral scrolls combined with blossoming branches plus haunting and geometric patterns.

In this technique artists made gilded or varnished objects from paper paste or compressed layers of paper. The design outlined in chalk are picked out in white with eggshell and clear varnish, and then polished.

Then the first layer of colored lacquer is applied, usually followed by silver leaf and one more layer of clear lacquer. Then several more layers of different colored lacquers are painted by brush, with clear lacquer layers in between them.

Iranian Art Museum Garden is located at Dr Hesabi St., Maghsoodbeyg St.,Tajrish Sq.

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