Annali di Ca’ Foscari. Serie orientale
55 | 2019

Annali di Ca’ Foscari. Serie orientale
55 | 2019

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Topic
chevron_rightLanguages and Cultures of the Middle and Far East

Language
en

ISSN
chevron_right1125-3789

e-ISSN
chevron_right2385-3042

Online issue
Vol. 55 | Num. 1 | Giugno 2019

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Annali di Ca’ Foscari. Serie orientale | 55 | 2019

Between Mughal Art, Ethnography and Realism
On Nicolò Manucci’s Artistic Patronage in India (1680-1720)

Gianni Dubbini
SOAS, University of London, UK
giannidubbinivenier@gmail.com

DOI 10.30687/AnnOr/2385-3042/2019/01/009

Submitted 12 Feb 2019
Accepted 14 Mar 2019

Abstract

Nicolò Manucci (or Manuzzi) (ca. 1638-1720) is a well-known figure among scholars: a Venetian adventurer, artilleryman and doctor in Early Modern India. He was a dynamic man, who frequented for a long time both the Mughal courts and the European agents of the seventeenth and early eighteenth century trade companies, leaving meaningful testimonies of his age, and thus becoming an important (and controversial) historical source on South Asia. In spite of the celebrity gained by his biography and his work, Manucci’s role as European patron of Indian artists has been undervalued so far, with scholars often preferring to define him as a mere collector of works of Indian miniatures. Through an historic and artistic examination of his work, of other coeval works of art and contemporary sources, the aim of this paper is to show that Manucci was actually an important patron of Indian painting, a paradigmatic precursor of figurative didactic works mainly illustrated by (unfortunately anonymous) Indian artists under his guidance, and at the same time mediated by his bias and his culture, following an interesting and original hybrid format that bridges European figurative culture and Indian art.

Keywords
South Asian Art. Nicolò Manucci. Indian Painting. Connected History & Global History.

Creative Commons License This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License 

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Campo DC Valore

dc.contributor.author

Dubbini Gianni

dc.title

Between Mughal Art, Ethnography and Realism

dc.type

Journal Article

dc.language.iso

en

dc.identifier.uri

http://doi.org/10.14277/AnnOr/2385-3042/2019/01/009

dc.description.abstract

Nicolò Manucci (or Manuzzi) (ca. 1638-1720) is a well-known figure among scholars: a Venetian adventurer, artilleryman and doctor in Early Modern India. He was a dynamic man, who frequented for a long time both the Mughal courts and the European agents of the seventeenth and early eighteenth century trade companies, leaving meaningful testimonies of his age, and thus becoming an important (and controversial) historical source on South Asia. In spite of the celebrity gained by his biography and his work, Manucci’s role as European patron of Indian artists has been undervalued so far, with scholars often preferring to define him as a mere collector of works of Indian miniatures. Through an historic and artistic examination of his work, of other coeval works of art and contemporary sources, the aim of this paper is to show that Manucci was actually an important patron of Indian painting, a paradigmatic precursor of figurative didactic works mainly illustrated by (unfortunately anonymous) Indian artists under his guidance, and at the same time mediated by his bias and his culture, following an interesting and original hybrid format that bridges European figurative culture and Indian art.

dc.relation.ispartof

Annali di Ca’ Foscari. Serie orientale

dc.relation.ispartof

Vol. 55 | Num. 1 | Giugno 2019

dc.publisher

Edizioni Ca’ Foscari - Digital Publishing

dc.date.issued

2019-06-27

dc.dateAccepted

2019-02-12

dc.dateSubmitted

2019-03-14

dc.identifier.issn

1125-3789

dc.identifier.eissn

2385-3042

dc.rights

Creative Commons 4.0 Attribution alone

dc.rights.uri

http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/

dc.subject

South Asian Art

dc.subject

Nicolò Manucci

dc.subject

Indian Painting

dc.subject

Connected History & Global History

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55 | 2019

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