How did the idea come about?
When I was launching The Last Mughal in New York. There was a fantastic projection on late Mughal art in Asia Society; we got talking. Once Yuthika Sharma came in, it fell into place.
As a writer, you work alone. What was it like to collaborate?
Really enjoyable. I’m not as rigorous an art historian as Yuthika is, and learnt a lot from her.
Why the late Mughals again?
The book I’m writing at the moment is on the First Afghan War. I’ve now written three books (including White Mughals and The Last Mughal) on this period—it’s my little patch!
History aside, how do the works fare as art?
They are masterpieces of Indian art and yet no one knows of Ghulam Ali Khan and Mazhar Ali Khan, artists who were every bit the jewels of the late Mughal court as Ghalib was.
What catches your eye as a historian?
The eclectic quality of the art that defies easy...