Muhammad Ali was one of the most popular artists in the reign of Shah Abbas II (1642 -1666). He was born in the family of the artist Malik Husayn Isfahani, who is known as the author of the frontispiece to a manuscript of the "shahnama" from 1648 (Windsor, Library). However, judging by the style of the works that the son did not go in his father's footsteps. His work is closer to the works of his contemporary Muhammad Qasim.
Unlike other of his contemporary, Muine Musavvir, Muhammad Ali did not invent any innovations. Researchers unanimously believe his work is the logical conclusion of the ideas contained in the late art of Riza-Yi-Abbasi. The artist took part in illustrating several manuscripts, in particular of the divan (Collected poems) of Hafiz (1640., Istanbul, Topkapi Saray), to which he made a large number of drawings with a tint in the manner of Muhammadi. He also created eight illustrations to the poem "Susa VA Gudaz" (Burning and all-consuming), written by the poet Muhammad Riza Navi at the request of the son of Mughal Emperor Akbar, Prince Daniyal. (Baltimore, Walters collection).
Muhammad Ali. The young man in a landscape. 1650-60s. British Museum, London.
The greatest popularity among his contemporaries, the artist brought the figures on separate sheets. Like Riza Yi-Abbasi and Muhammad Qasim he gave the preference to topics such as elegant young men, women, and sheiks, hermits. Of course, these drawings had features that distinguished them from the drawings of other artists. For example, locks on portraits of young men he's always with one side hanging below the ear, and on the other hand fluff around the cheeks, shading her path. Instead of space with a clear horizon and natural vegetation Muhammad Ali was often placed his characters in an uncertain environment in the middle and upper registers decorated with plants.
Among his works are stored in the Louvre there is a picture with a light tint, depicting a young man in a fur hat is one of the earliest works of Muhammad Ali, which is a copy of a drawing of Riza-Yi-Abbasi "Girl in a fur hat" in the Hermitage collection, St. Petersburg. Incidentally, the famous Hermitage work, Riza Yi-Abbasi is sometimes called not "Girl in a fur hat" and "Young man in a fur hat". As just noticed, the Russian scholar Z. N. Vorozheykina - half of a poetic image in Persian culture does not matter: "the Object of worship – idol – poetry-often impersonal, what contributes to the very nature of the Persian language that do not have a grammatically expressed gender".
One of the funniest pictures of Muhammad Ali "Monkey bear" from the collection of the Hermitage Museum, St. Petersburg. This theme in Persian painting of the XVII century, has a few variants of the image. This story was drawing Riza-Yi-Abbasi, and muin Musavvir, for example, depicted a monkey riding a lion with a spear and the cap of a dervish. However, the symbolism of this image still remains unclear.