The Royal Gallery is a hallway within the Fire Nation Royal Palace containing large portraits of previous Fire Lords, including those of Ozai, Azulon, Sozin, and two preceding Fire Lords. Each portrait depicts its subject holding aloft a fireball to signify their mastery of firebending, as well as imagery which summarizes events during their rule.
When Prince Zuko received a message stating that he needed to learn the story of his great-grandfather's demise, he went to the Royal Gallery and stared at Sozin's portrait. Azula found him there and made a snide comment to her brother, before helping him out by telling him the history of Sozin.
After returning from exile, a distraught Ursa nervously walked the palace grounds before stopping to look at Ozai's portrait, reassuring herself by exclaiming that the former Fire Lord could no longer hurt her or her family.
Portrait of Sozin's grandfather
This is the official portrait of Fire Lord Sozin's grandfather.
This Fire Lord is depicted in traditional Fire Lord attire, although the robes are slightly less ornate than the robes seen during Aang's lifetime, in a darker tone with less golden details.
The Fire Lord is standing amidst flowers and several leaves, and located behind him is a large design resembling a flower's petals. As with all of the other Fire Lord portraits, the sun is painted directly behind the ruler's head. In this particular portrait, the sun appears to be behind the darkened shadow of the moon.
Portrait of Sozin's father
This is the official portrait of the father of Fire Lord Sozin and grandfather of Fire Lord Azulon.
The attire in this portrait is very similar to the robes of his three consecutive successors, namely Sozin, Azulon, and Ozai. Unlike the previous set of attire, these robes contain more ornate gold trimmings.
An image of what appears to be a star behind a waning moon, representing the four cardinal directions, is depicted in the Fire Lord's left hand, with a similar symbol located at his feet. The portrait also contains many clouds and portrays a red sun behind the Fire Lord's head.
Portrait of Fire Lord Sozin
Sozin is shown with a scroll in one hand and a ball of fire in the other. Above his head is the representation of the Great Comet, later named after him, that he used to wipe out the Air Nomads, beginning the Hundred Year War. Located at Sozin's feet are five firebending members of the Fire Nation military, signifying his military buildup. Behind his head is a bronze sun.
Portrait of Fire Lord Azulon
The sun behind Azulon's head has a black outline, while his attire is exactly the same as his father's, with the exception of a new gold lining on the piece of his robe that hangs from his waist.
The sun behind Azulon's head appears to be blocking out the moon. Azulon is standing on top of a turtle, an animal that lives both on land and in water, signifying his military successes over both the Earth Kingdom and the Water Tribes.
Portrait of Fire Lord Ozai
The final portrait in the hall depicts Fire Lord Ozai. Ozai is shown bending black fire and has multiple metal cogs and smokestacks behind him, representing the advancements in technology and industry pioneered during his rule.
A large red-and-gold design is painted behind Ozai. Like all of the previous portraits, Ozai is depicted with the sun behind his head.
- The wall-hanging scrolls mimic the style of Chinese Lizhou, scrolls commonly found in Chinese art.
- The design of the sun behind each Fire Lord's head is similar to the Buddhist design often seen in Tang Dynasty and Indian paintings, with the sun meaning enlightenment and the surrounding flames representing wisdom. It also resembles the halos found in Christian art, which represent godliness, a common motif with the Fire Lord.
- ↑ 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 1.5 1.6 Ehasz, Elizabeth Welch (writer) & Spaulding, Ethan (director). (October 26, 2007). "The Avatar and the Fire Lord". Avatar: The Last Airbender. Season 3. Episode 6. Nickelodeon.
- ↑ From older Avatar: The Last Airbender official site, originally on Nick.com (link). No longer updated, encyclopedia now broken though archived here.
- ↑ DiMartino, Michael Dante; Konietzko, Bryan; Yang, Gene Luen (writer), Sasaki of Gurihiru (penciling, inking), Kawano of Gurihiru (colorist), Heisler, Michael; Comicraft (letterer). Smoke and Shadow Part One (September 23, 2015), Dark Horse Comics.