Tag: persian

Rug Classifications

The first thing that most people want to understand about rugs is how to classify them. There are a number of ways to do this.

  • One could classify rugs by general rug type:
    a. Tribal Weavings
    b. Cottage Rugs
    c. Workshop Rugs
  • One could classify rugs by the style they portray:
    a. Tribal, or geometric, weavings.
    b. Decorative, or casual, rugs.
    c. City, or formal, rugs.
  • From there, a more specific classification comes into play, where the rug is from:
    Persia
    Turkey
    India
    The Caucuses
    Europe
    China
    Turkoman
    America
    Israel
    Morocco
    Palestine
  • After pinpointing where a rug is from, it can further be categorized by weave type and color to a distinct area within the countries of origin. Here is a list of most types of rugs:
  • Persian Rugs:

Afshar
Bakhtiari
Bakhshaiesh
Bibikabad
Bidjar
Farahan
Gabbeh
Ghashgaie
Hamadan
Heriz
Isfahan
Joshaqan
Karaja
Kashan
Kashan – Dabir
Kashan – Mohtasham
Kazvin
Kerman
Kerman – Lavar
Kurdish
Lilihan
Mahal
Malayer
Malayer – Mishan
Mashad
Mashad – Sabeer
Mood (NE Persian)
NW Persian
Qum
Sarouk
Sarouk – Farahan
Sarouk – Mohajeran
Senneh
Serab
Seraband
Serapi
Shiraz
Sultanabad
Sultanabad – Ziegler
Tabriz
Tabriz – Haji Jalili
Tehran

  • Turkish Rugs:
    Ghiordes
    Melas
    Oushak
    Oushak – Angora
    Oushak – Borlou
    Sivas
    Yuruk
  • Indian Rugs:
    Agra
    Amritsar
    Dhurrie
    Sharistan

 

  • Caucasian:
    Bidjov
    Chi-Chi
    Kuba
    Karabagh
    Lesghi
    Moghan
    Shirvan
    Talish
    Zeychor
    Kazak
  • European:
    Arraiolos Needlework
    Aubusson
    Axminster
    Besserabian
    Donegal
    English Art Deco
    German – Bauhaus
    Needlepoint
    Rya
    Savonnerie
    Spanish – Cuenca
    Tapestry
    Ukranian
  • American:
    American Hooked Rugs
    Braided Rug
    Navajo
    Rag Rug
  • Chinese:
    Art Deco
    Khotan
    Mongolian
    Ning Xia
    Peking
    Samarghand
  • Turkoman:
    Baluch
    Ersari
    Beshir
    Hatchli
  • Other:
    Bezalel – Palestine
    Israeli
    Kerghiz
    Moroccan
  • All of the above:
    Soumak
    Kilim

To view  classify rugs on our website, please use this link:

http://www.antiquerugstudio.com/

 

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Rug of the Week Carpet #21055

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Persian Rug #21055, size 18’0″ x 10’10”

Antique Northeast Persian Carpet

Khorassan Province

Later 18th Century

Khorassan was a truly enormous Persian province, once extending all the way to the Oxus River, bordering on  true Central Asia. Even After the eastern parts were lost in the Afghan invasion after 1722, the province still encompassed vast areas of desert and steppe with important cities like Meshed and productive farmland. Carpet weaving in the area goes back centuries with Herat, the old capital and now in Afghanistan, famous in the 16th century for its fine rugs. Our antique Persian carpet is not from Herat, but was probably woven in the area around Qain (the Qainat) or more likely in the town itself as it has, as we shall see, all the marks of an urban production of the period.

After the fall of the Persian Safavid ruling dynasty in 1722, there was a decided fall off in patronage as the nation descended into invasions and disorder.  As a result, the remaining carpet workshops cut costs to survive and this meant, among other things, the elaborate medallion designs and the designers who conceived them were replaced by repeating patterns derived from textiles which could be easily and elegantly executed in pieces of any size or format. Thus appeared the now iconically Persian Herati, Gol Hennai, Mina Khani and Boteh patterns. Our design is a particularly felicitous variant on the Gol Hennai pattern.  A primary diamond lattice is formed by a repeat of four cypresses or leaves framing a large rosette and smaller rosette bosses uniting the cypresses. A thinner, secondary lozenge lattice connects the cypresses and large rosettes. This pattern is found in both northeast and northwest Persian rugs, runner and large carpets.  As to where it originated, that is unsure, but by the early 19th century it was in use both in Khorassan and in Azerbaijan in early antique Heriz carpets. In both areas light grounds, ivory as here, were the preferred overall tonalities.

The red-orange main border with in and out main palmettes, sickle leaves and smaller rosettes, all linked by double angular vines seems to appear about the same time as the field pattern, and the navy blue connected “S” guards are frequent accompaniments in both weaving areas. In sum, our 21055 is a perfect embodiment of a period style. Khorassan would thus seem to be the place of origin for the field /border design combination around 1750 or so.

The size and perfection of execution as indicated by the pattern balance in all directions implies an experienced and highly professional workshop working for discerning patrons who expected an artistically and technically superior product. Although many Persian carpets of the period are long and narrow, there are certainly exceptions and 21055 clearly predates the period of Western export demand.

The foundation is all cotton and the woolen pile is tied with the Khorassan version of the jufti knot (on four warps rather than two), giving a lighter handle than usual. In a culture where only unshod feet touch a carpet, this still gives plenty of wearability. Our piece is in good condition for its age and proper care will give it many more years of attractive appearance. All the colours are from natural sources; indigo for the blue and either madder or cochineal for the reds. Yes, you can make oranges from cochineal.

There are very few carpets of this post-Classic period surviving, especially in this large size and ultra-desirable colour scheme. Our carpet 21055 is a particularly attractive solution of a perennial question: how to cover a large floor area without excess busyness, keeping formality without rigidity and authenticity without making an overt issue of it.

Northwest Persian Rug

Western Persia, Greater Hamadan Weaving Area.

Provenance: Ex-Collection Colonial Williams burg.

Yellow, whether as old gold, mustard, canary or straw, is probably the rarest and most difficult natural dye color found in oriental rugs.

Mostly as an accent, but a number of Kurdish runners employ it as a field tone. But a huge carpet in a rich, saturated mustard gold is, well, let us say, uncommon, rare, and excessively rare.

The dye is either weld or pomegranate rind and an experienced, professional urban dye-master was certainly involved.

The rug, both considering its size and rare color palette could only have been woven as a special order it has been special ever since. Certainly it was special enough to grace a period room at Colonial Williams burg.

The pattern was woven inverted to make the placement of the individual floral motives easier. The allover flowering plant design was adapted from Persian silk brocade textiles of the early 19th century.

The navy main border has a stylized diagonal iris and square rosette design, the so-called “Zanbaki” patter, popular in Persian village rugs from the Bijar and Heriz areas since the second half of the 19th century.

The foundation is all cotton, with a single weft between symmetric knot rows. The condition is excellent throughout. This carpet is all about color. Absolutely about color. It is the very antithesis of certain contemporary design trends which eschew saturated and embrace the attenuated. This carpet is ahead of trends or maybe trends are simply irrelevant to it.

Speaking of trends, can we profitably discern any in the antique carpet market? Mediocre is out, probably forever.  A hand knotted carpet of real age has to say something.  In 2016, the uptake of genuine pieces seems to have reached a low ebb. Color was out, artistic statements were ignored. But in 2017 something unexpected seems to have started. Buyers have begun asking, at least sometimes, for REAL carpets. Pattern may be coming back and genuine color(s), not washed out ones, are being looked at. Opulence should follow.

In any event, our no. 19342 fits the bill. Sure, it will compete with wall candy or designer furniture. But real art never clashes. It only makes the good things better, and exposes the poseur objects for the pretentious fakes they are. If this carpet fits your loft, try it out. It may give you a whole new way of seeing color.

19342
N.W Persian Rug #19342, size 20’8″ x 12’2″

Rug of the Week: Sultanabad 21242

A Sultanabad Carpet that is truly wild and uninhibited. Style trends come. Style trends go. Great, individual art is forever. Art is not something that has to be hung on a wall and intently or idly contemplated. Sometimes it turns up elsewhere and it is no less creative because of it. Great art happens and it is up to us to appreciate it. Some rugs are great art, some are barely acceptable craft.

The Persian carpet revival began in the 1870’s and in the 1880’s the English firm of Ziegler established a substantial presence in and around the town of Sultanabad in Arak province in western Iran. Although a comprehensive firm in its provision of dyed yarn, other materials, designs and cash orders to a vast network of local village weavers, it never organized fixed workshops. Every Ziegler is a folk art production, some more regimented than others. Sometimes something truly exceptional comes through and this is one.

No cartoon, no design sampler here, just the work of a handful of true artists. The wild, eccentric design has no obvious center among the red and ivory escutcheon palmettes, or among the middle blue vertical pendanted cartouches. Everything tilts to one side, but not vertigo-inducing, just enough to give a sense of irregular motion. There is nothing like it in the vast corpus of published Ziegler Sultanabad carpets of the 1882-1930 period. There is nothing like it among Persian carpets period.

The rare yellow border takes as its pattern slices of the allover Herati field pattern omnipresent in Persian rugs, but here much less compact and structured, more crazy and informal. The jogs in the minor guard stripes indicate the “lazy lines” indicative of weaver changes and one day’s work. Who directed the artisans, or did they work on their own? Was eccentricity catching?

Although of carpet size (10.8 by 13.3) our Sultanabad occupies a firm place in the pantheon of true art, not just “carpet art”. Virtually all art is to some degree commercial. The question is not what is the art form, or what are the materials, or what is the originating culture or artist, or how old it is, but only how good it is. This carpet answers that question most admirably.

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Sultanabad rug #21242, size 13’3″ x 10’8″