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Virtual Show and Tell Just what the title says it is.

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Old August 11th, 2018, 03:21 PM   #1
Matt Saver
Join Date: Aug 2018
Posts: 2
Default What is it?

Hi Everyone.

Very happy to have discovered this forum. It is exactly what I need.

This is a 6x9 rug from somewhere in the Middle East - I think. My mother was an archaeologist and spent many summers in Syria and Iraq in the 70's. The pictures she brought back were amazing - a tiny Caucasian woman surrounded by Bedouins and camels, ruins, digs and the friends she made. Anyway, she brought this home and it has been in storage since around 1970. It appears in good shape, although I admit my complete ignorance when it comes to rugs. It has longer pile than most Persian rugs I've seen and I don't remember where she said she bought it. Perhaps it is not from that area? I have no idea what it is or if it is even of any value. Not really an issue, I just wanted to know what it is and if I should walk on it or give it to a museum

Thanks all! Your advice is appreciated!

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Old August 12th, 2018, 11:17 AM   #2
Phil Bell
Join Date: Aug 2017
Location: Manchester UK
Posts: 24


I am not one of the experts on here but I have a little knowledge. The first thing to ascertain is whether it is hand made, which it is. Thats a start but I think that's also the end as far as this story goes. It is a walker rather than a museum piece, the limited palette and rather stiff drawing make it 20th century without doubt. As for its origin I can't say but I am sure some on here will know. A rough guess would be India or Pakistan.
It may not be a museum piece but it has been laboured over for months no doubt and in these days of mass production anything hand made should be treasured. Use it and enjoy.


Last edited by Phil Bell; August 12th, 2018 at 11:26 AM.
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Old August 12th, 2018, 03:54 PM   #3
Rich Larkin
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: Massachusetts
Posts: 169

Hi Matt,

As Phil says, you have a handwoven rug, very probably made in the second half of the 20th century. There are many venues in Turkey, Iran and Afghanistan (and, no doubt, other locations) in which undyed wools are used for the pile of the rug, and yours looks like an example from one of those places.

I would eliminate Turkey as a source. The design elements suggest a location somewhere in the northwest part of Iran. The borders could be found in older rugs from that general area; the field elements reflect traditional designs as well, but used in a more recently conceived way. My close second for a guess would be Afghanistan, from where a number of this type of piece came in the last century. The weavers were presumably people of Turkoman ancestry, but neither the designs nor the weaving practices were limited to the traditions of those groups.

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Old August 12th, 2018, 10:48 PM   #4
Matt Saver
Join Date: Aug 2018
Posts: 2

Thank you Steve, Rich and Phil! Your insight is appreciated. Maybe someone may have seen this type before. Northwest Iran or Afghanistan are the best guesses so far. And I didn't know it was contemporary and hand woven until you replied. Good progress!
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