Jun 132010
 

From My Delineated Life, a remarkable animatronic bed.

This rosewood bed, encrusted with silver and the figures made of bronze, was created for Nawab Muhammad Bahawal Khan Abbasi V of Bahawalpur in 1883. The four figures at the corners represent women of France, Spain, Italy and Greece. With clever mechanisms, the statues were able to wink and wave fans and fly whisks. No flys on this Khan.

What’s interesting is that this artifact represents a kind of reverse Orientalism, an “Oriental” man’s fantasy of different varieties of European women.

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