Beginning this month, the Met Museum
in New York will present a bejewelled history of India spanning
four centuries in an exhibition titled
Organised by Navina Haidar, curator of the museum’s Islamic Art department, all of the 60 exhibits have been sourced from the
private collections of Qatar’s Sheikh Hamad bin Abdullah Al-Thani. The showcase includes exclusive pieces such as a rock crystal flask inlaid with gold wire, rubies, and emeralds from 17th-century Mughal India;
gem-studded falcon anklets made in jade; a gold seal ring from 19th-century South India; and a platinum aigrette designed by French designer Paul Iribe in 1910 amongst others. Curator’s picks “The Mughal dagger with a jadecarved youth’s head at its hilt shows the intricate art of hardstone carving of the period and a sophisticated taste for simple, unadorned luminous nephrite jade,” says Haidar. “The gem-set gold tiger’s head finial comes from the throne of Tipu Sultan, who adopted the tiger as his royal symbol. Both these works are top examples of their kind of art.”
Dagger ( with European head. Part of the Al-Thani collection.