Re: Errors in judgment or intentional changes? The "internal mihrab"

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Posted by James Allen on December 13, 1998 at 15:38:55:

In Reply to: Errors in judgment or intentional changes? The "internal mihrab" posted by Steve Price on December 13, 1998 at 14:34:31:

: Dear Friends,

: John's "Oops!" thesis reminded me of a very interesting presentation at ICOC in Hamburg. I've lost the program and don't remember who the author was; perhaps some reader can fill that in for us.

: The subject was the fairly common change in border and field width that's seen in rustic and tribal rugs. It's as though the weaver got started, decided the proportions didn't suit her, and changed the width of the borders and the field. I had always seen this as a correction of an error in judgment.

: The presentation put forth the thesis that this was not a correction at all, but an intentional feature of the design, and he referred to it as an "internal mihrab". I was, and still am skeptical of this interpretation.

: But how to test the two possibilities? One way would be to find pairs of rugs made consecutively in the same design and see if both had this feature. If they did, then it would obviously be intentional since the weaver would have seen from the first one what had to be done to make it right. The next question, then, is, how do we find consecutively woven pairs of rugs?

: Actually, this is exactly what intact pairs of khorjin are. And, in the case of pile khorjin, it is easy to tell which face was woven first. So, I ask our readers to help out. If you have an intact khorjin pair and one has an abrupt change in border width, does this occur on only one or n both? If on only one, is it on the one woven first? I think a few examples would allow us to answer the question of whether this characteristic is intentional or correction of an error.

: Regards,

: Steve Price
: Mistakes lead to resolutions which themselves can become the focus of repetition. The milleu of appreciation determines the direction and magnitude of any development. Nomadic weaving that is linguistically stored and transmitted through chants ,which themselves carry in code the vital parts of design ,evolves over time to become more efficient and effacacious. This means that the design becomes simplified yet gains clarity and depth. Through time more and more information is subsumed into the subconscious and more and more information is conveyed. This also means the educational demands on successive generations is great. This is very important for if a weaving culture is stable for hundreds of years the information conveyed through the weaving syntax is great and required a high degree of connoiseurship to succeed. This type of environment creates world class masterpieces of weaving. John you are asking real good questions but they are formatted wrong. You can answer most of the questions you raise in your article by simply looking for intentionality in the white patterning. Jim Allen

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