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Old August 23rd, 2017, 03:53 PM   #1
Kay Dee
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Default Great descriptive (but old) book!

Realizing this book is probably old hat to you nomads of western Asia, but for someone like me from the east who has no interest whatsoever west of the Afghan/ Iran border (although I think I said elsewhere 'west of the Durand Line', but with an Afghan caveat), and while having a huge collection of Tibetan and Chinese rug books, have next to nothing, 'cept a few on Afghan rugs. Well not where I live now anyway. So thought I should have at least one, to offset my Tibet / Chink ones, and what a beauty!

Anyway this book, printed in 1984, and available cheaply on the web is; Rugs and Carpets from Central Asia (The Russian Collections) by Elena Tsareva. Lots of color pics, and while not up to the standard of today's digital reproductions, are certainly more than adequate / acceptable. And highly descriptive of type / construction, etc of each rug.

Anyway, just in case someone does not have it, I can highly recommend it.................. .................... .
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Old August 24th, 2017, 01:13 AM   #2
Lloyd Kannenberg
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Hi Kay Dee!

We should all follow your example and learn about rugdom beyond whatever narrow specializations we are stuck in. Which prompts the obvious question: Do you have recommendations of books on Chinese, Tibetan, Indian rugs that might enlighten us Western Barbarians? I have Bidder's book on Tarim Basin rugs and Eiland's "Chinese and Exotic Rugs", but really nothing on Ningxia or Gansu rugs, or Tibetan rugs, and only Gans-Ruedin on Indian rugs. Any suggestions would be welcome!

Cheers,

Lloyd Kannenberg
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Old August 24th, 2017, 03:29 AM   #3
Steve Price
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Here's a link to a prolonged discussion of rug books that we held on Turkotek. It's nearly 20 years old now, so lots of new stuff isn't in it. But it has pretty good critical reviews of a lot of books suitable for beginners and advanced collectors.

Steve Price
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Old August 24th, 2017, 05:25 AM   #4
Chuck Wagner
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Lloyd,

For starters on Tibetan rugs, try:

Tibetan Rugs. Kuloy, Hallvard Kare. Orchid Press
ISBN-10: 9748304078
ISBN-13: 978-9748304076

Regards
Chuck
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Old August 24th, 2017, 09:26 AM   #5
Kay Dee
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lloyd Kannenberg View Post
Hi Kay Dee!

We should all follow your example and learn about rugdom beyond whatever narrow specializations we are stuck in. Which prompts the obvious question: Do you have recommendations of books on Chinese, Tibetan, Indian rugs that might enlighten us Western Barbarians? I have Bidder's book on Tarim Basin rugs and Eiland's "Chinese and Exotic Rugs", but really nothing on Ningxia or Gansu rugs, or Tibetan rugs, and only Gans-Ruedin on Indian rugs. Any suggestions would be welcome!

Cheers,

Lloyd Kannenberg
Lloyd,

I am just on way out, but your in luck, as probably thr three best books EVER òn primarily Tibetan, but one on mixed tib / mong / ning have been published in last few years. Simply magnificent.

When I get back in later today I'll post full details.

Re Chucks recomend, I have it and a good starter, but also suffers from less than ideal photo reproduction and somewhat basic info when conpared tothe latter three I allude too.

The ones I will advise of are simply STUNNING in every way, and completely up to date / the latest word on the subject as it were. Not all that cheap though but well well worth the cost!

EDIT: Got a few mins waiting on wife now (ha, ha) but at least here are the names.

Edit 2: Back from my sojourn. So, if I could only own three books on the subject these would now be the three (and I believe I have every book on Tibetan and or "Chinese' rugs ever printed in the English language. Oh, I have no interest in Indian rugs, so can't help there, sorry.)

Dragon and Horse by Dr. Koos De Jong (saddle carpets ONLY, from chin, mong, tib) Ten stars!

Published 2013, 191 glossy pages, crammed full of (mainly) small but the most magnificent (photos of) saddle rugs from the above countries that I have ever seen (and I have seen a lot since staring collecting / selling in 1971) Lots of details and IIRC at least some (all?) of the individual rugs construction details. De Jong is currently considered and expert on the subject in saddlerugdom. Out of print, (originally cost 90USd) now available sometimes for a little less, or for a lot lot more. Actually now available second hand from as little as 50USD!

Sacred and Secular by Robert Piccus (Arguably the finest collection in the world today, of primarily tib rugs.) Ten stars!

Published 2011, 293 semi-glossy pages, full of 'two to a page format' exquisite rugs, with all details of all rugs pictured (i.e. when bought, where, and all construction details for each rug, or at least almost each rug IIRC) Cant recall price but at least between 75 and 100USD IIRC Actually now available second hand now from as little as 40USD!

From the Land of the Snow Lion by Michael Buddeberg (tib rugs) Ten stars!

Published Dec, 2016, 340 semi-glossy pages, each chapter by various experts in the field. Full construction details (and then some, some of which are beyond my level of understanding, or should I say my necessary understanding, but always willing to learn something new). And for the first time almost ever for Tibetan rugs, many many pictures of a one inch square of the back side of the rug! Probably THE most descriptive construction techniques book EVER on Tibetan rugs (and there are more construction techniques illustrated than I ever knew / imagined about / of Tibetan rugs!). Again cant recall price but at least between 75 and 100USD IIRC. Probably 90% about rugs with, maybe 10 (15?) percent at back of book about Tibetan jewellery. Actually now available second hand from as little as 40USD!

I've got many more up my long sleeve, but they will have to wait till I another post. Like I said, if I could only own three, these would be the three, and it would be hard to pick between the three, I simply couldn’t. Each is a masterpiece in its own right!

Opps gotta run, I'm in trouble now! (Pardon any spelling mistakes, no time to check without incurring wrath of the 'boss'!)

Last edited by Kay Dee; August 26th, 2017 at 01:52 PM. Reason: I'm back, 2nd edit, book descriptions
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Old August 24th, 2017, 04:10 PM   #6
Kay Dee
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And for those truly adventurous, inquisitive collectors of art, in this instance rather obscure textile art, it would be remiss of me not to mention and highly recommend this book.

Thunder Dragon Textiles From Bhutan by Mark Bartholomew.
Pub. 1985, 125 pages, containing superb quality reproduced photos, glossy on the pages where the textiles are reproduced, English / Japanese text. (Printed in Japan, and the copy I have seemingly much more recently that the original in 1985, given the very high quality of the photo reproductions)

In this book are pieces from the, repeat THE best / finest collection of said textiles in the world. Period! A rather controversial collection I might add, but still the best.

A little background: I lived in Kathmandu during most of the 70’s / into the very early 80's. my interest carpets not textiles, when Mark visited KTM circa 76, IIRC. Mark had the $$, and got to know the right people 'in town' so he collected the very best / most pieces, many coming from the Royal Family of Bhutan.

Anyway long story made fairly short. Mark built up an enormous collection of the very best antique Bhutanese textiles, and many many years later the Royal Family (of Bhutan) wanted to buy some, repeat only some, back, as what he had, was far far better than what they now had. However, he would only sell his collection as a whole then (which he did / does still want a small - but now even bigger - fortune for) not individual pieces. But they only wanted individual pieces and he would not sell them like that. And as far as I am concerned, given they were collected fair and square, that was his prerogative.

Anyway, as far as I know, he still has the whole collection (or at least the majority of it, that is all the best pieces), and AFAIK will only sell what he has as a whole, and is in no hurry / in any need to do so, again as far as I know today from 'the grapevine'.

But because he would not sell certain individual pieces back to the Royal Family many people dislike him, and hence why I call it a controversial collection. But, without doubt, no ifs of buts, he has the very best collection of Bhutanese textiles in the world today, only which a small sample of is shown in the book. And even if you ‘only’ owned what is in this book, then you’d also hold one of the best collections too. So one can only imagine what his full collection must be like.

Anyway, I have no axe to grind on his behalf, as a matter fact I hardly knew him back then, circa 1978 when I last saw him, nor have had any contact with him since. But if you ask me, I side with his ‘stance’, that is he collected the pieces fair and square by buying them at the time and given that fact has the right now to say how he sells them, that is piece by piece, or as a whole. Anyway, that’s just my position and I’m sticking to it, what others think of him / his ‘ethics’ is up to them.

But the pieces in the book are simply stunning, if only a tiny peep into the arcane world of Bhutanese textiles!!!!!!!!

EDIT. Another book on the same subject (and a good collection no doubt, but no real comparison to the above), but does have more photos in it, and published in Thailand and suffers somewhat from, in some instances, poor reproduction of the photos is;
Traditional Bhutanese Textiles by Barbara S Adams (another old '70's Kathmandu local as it were)
Pub 1984, 154 pages, 'flattish' semi-glossy paper , i.e. semi-semi-glossy) small format book, approx 7" x 8".

Last edited by Kay Dee; August 25th, 2017 at 08:33 AM. Reason: Additional book
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Old August 26th, 2017, 11:27 AM   #7
Pierre Galafassi
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Hi guys,
A beautiful (and heavy ) book, in German, superbly illustrated and with focus on very old Chinese rugs (1400-1750) is:
Glanz der Himmelssöhne. Kaiserliche Teppiche aus China.
Published by the Museum für Ostasiatische Kunst, Köln.

regards
Pierre
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Old August 26th, 2017, 01:28 PM   #8
Kay Dee
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pierre Galafassi View Post
Hi guys,
A beautiful (and heavy ) book, in German, superbly illustrated and with focus on very old Chinese rugs (1400-1750) is:
Glanz der Himmelssöhne. Kaiserliche Teppiche aus China.
Published by the Museum für Ostasiatische Kunst, Köln.
regards
Pierre

I could find only two for sale online Pierre, a second hand soft cover (see description below) for 107USD and one new hardcover for 330USD!!! (and for that price, and very surprising to me, you could buy all three later published hard cover rug books I mention plus the Bhutanese book, and still have plenty of change! See my following post.

"Museum fur Ostasiatische Kunst / Textile And Art Publications, 2005. Softbound. As New. Color illustrated thick wraps. 227 pp., profusely illustrated in color. Text is in German, except for one essay and bilingual notes about the technical aspects of the individual rugs. A well-researched and assembled reference work. 68 rugs are featured and examined."
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Old August 26th, 2017, 01:42 PM   #9
Kay Dee
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I was completely wrong re the price of the three hard cover rug books I recommended!

I bought two new and a third second for more than the are available nowadays.

For instance;

Dragon and Horse by Dr. Koos De Jong (saddle carpets ONLY, from chin, mong, tib) Ten stars!

Plenty available second hand, from 50 to 254USD

Sacred and Secular by Robert Piccus (Arguably the finest collection in the world today, of primarily tib rugs.) Ten stars!

Plenty available second hand, some from 40 to 50USD, and on up from there.

From the Land of the Snow Lion by Michael Buddeberg (tib rugs) Ten stars!

Plenty available second hand, some from 41 to 50USD, and on up from there.

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Old August 26th, 2017, 05:45 PM   #10
Lloyd Kannenberg
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Hello Kay Dee and All!

In 2013 Koos de Jong gave our rug society a great presentation about his newly-published book. Why didn’t I buy a copy then? Well, it was pricey, and the second volume, a Chinese translation of the first, was beyond my competence. In time, I thought, the two volumes will become available separately at a better price. This is partly true; I have seen the second volume — but not the first — offered online at about half the original list price for both.

Robert Piccus’s Sacred and Secular seems like a better bet at the moment.

Bhutanese textiles are a little distant for me, but some years ago Diana Myers treated our rug society to a fascinating program on these remarkable weavings. So maybe Mark Barthomew’s book on his collection is worth a look, even if only for educational purposes!

For Chinese rugs I have ordered the Rippon Boswell catalogue of the Te-Chun Wang collection. And Glanz der Himmelssöhne is not cheap, but perhaps worth a go; the German text I think I could manage.

Meanwhile, here's the rug I'd like to learn about:




Surely it’s Chinese, but I thought a red cloth edging says “Tibet”. The books should help on this point and others (Is it OK? Is it a dog? From where in China? And so forth) Any comments would be gratefully received!

Lloyd Kannenberg

Last edited by Filiberto Boncompagni; August 26th, 2017 at 06:38 PM. Reason: fixed link
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Old August 27th, 2017, 08:28 AM   #11
Kay Dee
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lloyd Kannenberg View Post
Hello Kay Dee and All!
In 2013 Koos de Jong gave our rug society a great presentation about his newly-published book. Why didn’t I buy a copy then? Well, it was pricey, and the second volume, a Chinese translation of the first, was beyond my competence. In time, I thought, the two volumes will become available separately at a better price.
Well first they are (available at a better price, see message below), or should I say one is at least. Recently (last year) I bought what you refer to as the '1st volume' as a present for a friend. And that is the one with English text and suburb, if somewhat small, photos. But I guarantee you it is the last word on Tib/Chin/Mong saddle rugs!!! And available.

And no, unless I am very mistaken, the '2nd volume' you mention is just the mirror image Chinese text of the English text in the '1st volume' but with no photos. It was originally sold as a two book set, published in HK if IIRC. And the much thinner Chinese versions was just so / for Chinese who couldn't read English, would still buy the book. So you are missing nothing at all in what you refer to as the '2nd volume', as the English text AND all the rug photos are in the so-called '1st' volume.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lloyd Kannenberg View Post
Robert Piccus’s Sacred and Secular seems like a better bet at the moment.
If I could only by one I might lean to 'From the Land of the Snow Lion' but the Piccus book has more and better rugs, but not necessarily better descriptions, IMO anyway. Like I said before, very hard to pick between all three I mentioned. And given the 'new' cheap prices I found, I'd be buying all three without hesitation. That is, at the risk of me

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lloyd Kannenberg View Post
Bhutanese textiles are a little distant for me, but some years ago Diana Myers treated our rug society to a fascinating program on these remarkable weavings. So maybe Mark Barthomew’s book on his collection is worth a look, even if only for educational purposes!
Yes, but not before I bought the three rug books.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lloyd Kannenberg View Post
For Chinese rugs I have ordered the Rippon Boswell catalogue of the Te-Chun Wang collection.
Well an 'old' book (pub. 1978), and again IMO, has nothing on the three I have mentioned (and no, I get no commission etc, for recommending them, nor do I even know the three authors personally). May I be so rude as to ask what you paid for it? Should be between 40-50USD at most, but the other books on his collections of 1) saddle rugs and 2) on Chinese dowry rugs seem to all start in the 95/100USD and up range. But again, somewhat (now) dated text-wise books. Beautiful rugs in all though!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lloyd Kannenberg View Post
And Glanz der Himmelssöhne is not cheap, but perhaps worth a go; the German text I think I could manage.
Not before the other books I mention. It is all in German, while the other three are ALL in English. And all so cheap now! And I cannot repeat enough times, THE latest words on the subjects you are interested in by acknowledged leaders in their field of expertise and extremely well written, (not just somebody showing his collection, however nice, as the Te-Chun Wang Collection book basically is, no offense meant to him.)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lloyd Kannenberg View Post
Surely it’s Chinese, but I thought a red cloth edging says “Tibet”. The books should help on this point and others (Is it OK? Is it a dog? From where in China? And so forth) Any comments would be gratefully received!
I’d, need to see a close up of the knots on back (if back not covered that is), and if covered then a close up of front, both pile and especially a worn area that is: but at first glance 'looks' to me to be Chinese (and if so, most likely made in Ningxia), but IMO definitely made for the Tibetan market, hence some 'things' of note in it, but the red covered felt edges were almost certainly put on 'post production' in Tibet itself, even if the rug was not made there. But it also could just as easily be Tibetan made, and maybe it is (again, need to see knots to be 100% sure either way). Whatever it is Lloyd, it certainly aint no dog! If you have it though, just throw it out in the trash bin (but my trash bin) ANYtime.

EDIT. I will now stick my neck out here, after another look at it, and say that I think it is Tibetan made, (the centre, wherever it's made, being just a copy of a Chinese brocade pattern, which Tibetans often used in there rugs too), but lets see the pics if possible please.

Last edited by Kay Dee; August 27th, 2017 at 12:09 PM.
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Old August 27th, 2017, 04:17 PM   #12
Lloyd Kannenberg
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Hi Kay Dee!

First, thank you, for your original recommendations and for your kind comments. In deciding which books to buy first I tried to follow your wise policy, when you got Tzareva’s 1984 book on Central Asian rugs, of going for a more affordable reference with less than top quality pictures in order to familiarize yourself with the territory. You are to be congratulated for your rug book budget! But I must be content with only one book (at first, anyway) on Tibetan weavings, which is why I’m starting with Piccus. The Te-Chun Wang catalogue cost me $30 plus shipping, considerably more than I’ve seen for Tzareva’s book (down around $6 or so), it is true. I was interested in Glanz der Himmelssöhne not only because of Pierre’s recommendation but because it has been referenced elsewhere, for example by Sandra Whitman and Erica Yao in their HALI article on Tarim Basin rugs. But your advice makes sense!
Finally, I will try to get some detailed pictures of the rug I showed. I do know that Tibetan knotting is unique.

Thanks again!

Lloyd Kannenberg
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Old August 27th, 2017, 07:00 PM   #13
Kay Dee
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lloyd Kannenberg View Post
But I must be content with only one book (at first, anyway) on Tibetan weavings, which is why I’m starting with Piccus.
Well you have picked one of the three best books on the subject there is!


Quote:
Originally Posted by Lloyd Kannenberg View Post
The Te-Chun Wang catalogue cost me $30 plus shipping, considerably more than I’ve seen for Tzareva’s book (down around $6 or so), it is true.
Good price!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lloyd Kannenberg View Post
Finally, I will try to get some detailed pictures of the rug I showed. I do know that Tibetan knotting is unique.
Yes it is, unmistakably so. I hope you can get some / a clear pic/s of the knotting on back, as would solve it once and for all. Or should.

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Thanks again!
No problemo!
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Old August 27th, 2017, 07:48 PM   #14
Kay Dee
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Default Big Horse

Lloyd, I was hoping to contact you off-line by but I can't see a way to do so, so I am hoping I am not breaking any rules here by asking that if you should ever want to, shall we say, dispose in any way of your 'Big Horse Yarkand', if you haven't already done so, then please look me up.
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Old August 27th, 2017, 07:52 PM   #15
Steve Price
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We don't keep avenues of communication open out of concern for privacy and security. Lloyd, if you'd like to contact Kay, just send me an e-mail message and I'll send you the contact information.

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Old August 28th, 2017, 03:58 AM   #16
Jeff Sun
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lloyd Kannenberg View Post
Hello Kay Dee and All!


Meanwhile, here's the rug I'd like to learn about:




Surely it’s Chinese, but I thought a red cloth edging says “Tibet”. The books should help on this point and others (Is it OK? Is it a dog? From where in China? And so forth) Any comments would be gratefully received!

Lloyd Kannenberg
Hi Lloyd-

Well to determine Chinese or Tibetan, you really need to see the back of the rug. Looking at the front I would also go with Tibetan. Why, you might ask? It has lots of Chinese Motifs? Yes. It does. Many Tibetan rugs do.

1. The main tip-off to me is that the edges are wrapped in red felt. This is typical among many Tibetan rugs and usual among saddle carpets. Not that this is a saddle rug. More likely it is a Khaden. If the rug were a Khaden, or sleeping rug, that was removed from it's mattress than the edges would all be exposed, so wrap them up, safe and sound in some red felt!

2. The second indication that it is Tibetan and not Chinese, is that the red is actually pretty, um...RED. Older Chinese rugs often used logwood for red, and it fades, runs, and is universally NOT GOOD.
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Old August 28th, 2017, 07:16 AM   #17
Kay Dee
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Hi Jeff,

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jeff Sun View Post
1. The main tip-off to me is that the edges are wrapped in red felt. This is typical among many Tibetan rugs and usual among saddle carpets..
Agree with your above, and that Lloyds is almost certainly Tibetan (but without seeing the knots.........well), but................. ...............many / some Chinese rugs that were made specifically for the Tibetan market simply had that red edging added after arriving in Tibet. I myself have several Chinese rugs and Tibetan Khadens with it on (and numerous saddle rugs of course). I also have several rugs, made in Tibet, that do not have it, but do have a red pile border that directly mimics the red felt border as it were. Even from a short distance away you would swear it was the red felt border.

I must say Lloyds rug certainly has a unique swastika border. No that the swastika border is unique itself, but the way it is constructed / displayed her is, IMO!

PS. Lloyd, what are the dimensions of the rug, as it looks a little different size-wise than the 'typical' Tibetan Khaden size, which of course doesn't make it 'not Tibetan' by any means (maybe it is even a smallish Sapden)? Just wondering is all.

PSS. Lloyd I just noticed when I downloaded your rug pic, the caption states 'khotan _copy'. Where did that reference come from if I may ask?

Last edited by Kay Dee; August 28th, 2017 at 07:28 AM.
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Old August 28th, 2017, 09:34 AM   #18
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I hope Lloyd - and everyone else - will forgive me for what I have done to his rug................. .......but, check out the very interesting design, besides the five roundels, throughout the centre field, which does not show up so clearly in the 'real' color photo he put, hence my 'tweaking' it (no, not twerking it!).

Very unusual design IMO, especially in a Tibetan made carpet. Now I am even starting to doubt my 'Tibet' origin belief for this carpet myself.

But hey, if anyone can / will / has come up with the unexpected though, it will be a Tibetan weaver.

Knot photo desperately needed now if at all possible please Lloyd.

On second thoughts though Lloyd, I really think you should just get rid of it and throw it in the (my) bin now and you can then rest assured that I'll dispose of it in the proper fashion for you. . As like I first said, this rug is far far from a dog!

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Old August 28th, 2017, 12:53 PM   #19
Lloyd Kannenberg
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Hi Kay, Jeff and All,

Here are my best efforts at detailed pix. Apologies in advance for their quality, or rather lack thereof.









I tried to get a shot of a side and an end as well as just the knots, all from the back. The one from the front is of the most worn medallion. I hope they help.

Kay, you asked about the dimensions of the rug: It’s about 5 feet by 8, or 152 x 144 cm. I should say that the ends and sides of the rug are turned under, but since they are hidden behind the red casing I haven’t counted them. If they were turned up, each dimension would increase by about 2 inches or 5 cm.

The original picture is courtesy of the seller. The colors are pretty accurate, at least on my screen.

Thanks for your interest and patience!
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Old August 28th, 2017, 04:14 PM   #20
Kay Dee
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It is, as I started to think, unfortunately, after I 'enhanced it', ' Chinese' made, that is either was made for the Tibetan market or just ended up in Tibet and had the red border added their. That is, it is definitely NOT Tibetan knotting! And the size makes it more a floor carpet (Sapden in Tibetan) than a sleeping carpet (Khaden in Tibetan).

Still a beauty, but not such a beauty as it would have been had it been a Tibetan. And maybe that's why the caption on the .jpg I downloaded and 'enhanced' (not) said 'Khotan'?

But like I said, if your ever thwacking it away................ ... .............please remember me.


EDIT: Opps, something wrong with those measurement Lloyd; that is 5 feet by 8ft is not 152 x 144 cm! Which is it?

EDIT 2. As Steve Price said below Lloyd, would you be kind enough to contact me via him, as I have another question for you that this forum does not allow open discussion of here as it were. Thanks.

Last edited by Kay Dee; August 28th, 2017 at 04:40 PM.
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