The Mughal period's miniature art has existed since the 9th century, including ancient Indian religious texts. In the 15th century, under the influence of various styles, Mughal art was formed; more secular motives replaced religious motifs. Softer and lighter tones blurred the harsh and bright colours. Images in unusual sizes and shapes became realistic. Thanks to its distinctive style – a combination of Turkish, Iranian, Indian and European styles – Mughals' fine art reached its peak in the 16th and 17th centuries. The shift from collectivism to individualism led to more accurate and naturalistic paintings. In the paintings, maintaining harmony and balance was, figuratively speaking, an allusion to tolerance and cultural indulgence in the cosmopolitan Mughal society. Mughal visual art was not only a way of imitating the cultural tastes of aristocratic circles; it reflected the institutional structure of Mughal society. The political slogan "peace for all", dating back to the reign of Shah Babur and prevalent during the reign of Shah Akbar, was an indicator of the state's tolerance towards other cultures and nations. The intercultural exchange shaped the rich legacy of Mughal history. Miniatures of famous works satisfied the reader's taste and, simultaneously, were visual documents reflecting the historical realities of that time. Remarkably, the tradition of Nizami Ganjavi is noteworthy in the history of the Mughal school of fine arts and literature. This tradition, started by Amir Khosrov Dehlavi, tested the strength of the poets and artists in terms of style and composition: "Khamsa" became for them a field of rivalry and skill. The miniatures painted to "Khamsa" motifs should undoubtedly be considered one of the perfect examples in the history of the Mughal fine arts.
Mughal period of miniature art and Nizami Ganjavi
Keywords: Mughals, miniatures, India, multiculturalism, fine arts, Safavids, Shah Humayun, Shah Akbar, Nizami Ganjavi, Khamsa, Amir Khusrau Dihlavi