Nicolaes Maes (Dutch, 1634–1693). Young Woman Peeling Apples, ca. 1655. The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York. Bequest of Benjamin Altman, 1913 (14.40.612) | In this quiet interior, a young woman (probably a maid) is surrounded by velvety shadows and warmed by sunlight, as if in divine approval of her contented work.
This charming portrait of a young woman holding daisies is by the well-known sixteenth-century Persian painter Muhammadi of Herat. It exhibits the hallmarks of his elegant style, seen especially in the delicate rendering of the facial features and the detailed attention to the woman’s garb. The page bears the stamp of the Safavid ruler Shah 'Abbas I (r. 1587–1629), indicating that it belonged to his collection.