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Old August 28th, 2018, 09:54 AM   #1
Paul McGhee
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Join Date: Sep 2011
Location: Cambridge England
Posts: 10
Default Fabric Architecture - Tent panels etc.

I've been spending some time lately looking at designs which feature in the structures of tents - from the felt designs on Central Asian gyrs to the applique cotton designs of decorative tents still made in Cairo. For much of history it seems that important people from the areas which interest Turkotek contributors spent a lot of time in tents. These ranged from simple structures used in transhumance to the elaborate ceremonial tents of the Qajars. However, not that many pieces of Fabric Architecture seem to have survived compared with large numbers of rugs.

The purpose of Turkotek is to cover "collectible weavings" and to focus on areas "where rug enthusiasts can connect" so I guess tent designs fail as primary Turkotek subject matter on two counts: they are not really "weavings" and they can't be used as "rugs". However, they do form an interesting design pool which relates to rug design whilst, due to their typical shapes (circular roofs, square panels as opposed to rectangular rugs and bags) being subtly different.

Other types of Fabric Architecture would include panels made for hanging above doorways, rugs used on pillars, banners, church hangings, sunshades/umbrellas and so on. I see that these non-rug items have been referred to tangentially and fairly infrequently in previous forums and I wondered if they would make a good subject for a separate substantial discussion or a mini-forum about how they relate to rug design. If anyone knows a lot about these items (I'm just a beginner) they could kick it off, or suggest some links to authorities to help with research.

The best source I have found so far, which features lots of more or less contemporaneous pictures of 13th Century Mongol, Christian and Muslim tents is the Jami Al Twarikh manuscript.


https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jami%27_al-tawarikh
http://www.tentmakersofcairo.com/
https://www.hali.com/news/qajar-impe...-in-cleveland/
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Old August 28th, 2018, 12:43 PM   #2
Steve Price
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Join Date: May 2008
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Hi Paul

Thanks for the links. We use the words "weavings" and "rug collectors" a bit loosely. Any textile, especially if antique and having ethnographic significance is of interest, and we use "rug collector" as a synonym for anyone who collects such things.

Regards

Steve Price
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