Mongol Imperial Portraiture
 

Mongol Imperial Portraiture
 

Dynastic rituals involving ancestral homage were major ceremonies in imperial China, and ruling clans often commissioned imperial portraits. Although the Mongols of the Yuan dynasty were not native Chinese, they also continued this practice. The imperial Yuan portraits here are products of this functional need. In "Portrait of Emperor Shih-tsu (Khubilai Khan)" and "Portrait of Khubilai Khan's Consort (Chabi)", the eye sockets and cheeks were done using washes and rubbing, which differs from the traditional Chinese manner of single lines to delineate forms. Rather, it is closer to the artistic heritage of the Nepali and Tibetan region. Since the Mongols brought artists to court from different areas, the works that they had made at court therefore came to reflect a new style through the addition of non-native methods to traditional Chinese painting.