TurkoTek Discussion Boards

Subject  :  My nomination for best Turkmen
Author  :  Steve Price
Date  :  10-10-1999 on 09:09 a.m.
sprice@hsc.vcu.edu Dear All, My nomination for the most stunningly beautiful Turkmen piece I've ever seen is the Salor trapping that is on the dust jacket of Mackie and Thompson's book. I'm sorry to say that I don't have an image of it to post, and it's too big for my scanner. I've seen the piece twice, at TM conventions both times, and I found it simply breathtaking both times. It's about 8 feet long, so just the scale is impressive, with terrific colors, obviously wonderful wool, and a real "presence" (please don't press me for what I mean by that). There may be some others that would knock me out even more if I saw them in the wool, but so far this one is much better than anything I've encountered. Steve Price

Subject  :  RE:My nomination for best Turkmen
Author  :  Yon Bard
Date  :  10-11-1999 on 11:13 a.m.
My own candidate for best Turkmen (which I had already posted on the earlier Turkotek incarnation) is the Yomud asmalyk (Tzareva no. 74; discontinuity in picture is due to the original illustration spanning two pages). It's boldness of color and design simply bowl me over. In trying to choose my favorite Turkoman I also considered the Salor three-gul chuval whose two halves belonged to Cassin (Cassin and Hoffmeister no. 5; the right 45%) and Thompson (Sotheby's Thompson sale no. 60; the left 45%; the middle 10% or so is missing). Each one of the fragments is an exquisitely beautiful object. I decided to try and reconstruct digitally what the original chuval would have looked like, with the following result: I was too lazy to fully reconcile the borders and elem, or to restore the top, but this should give a general idea. I was disappointed to find that I liked the fragments better than the whole (Sam Gorden, are you listening?) because the shape was a bit too elongated. So I distorted the image to assume golden-ratio proportions, with the following result, which I rather prefer: Now it looks rather like what I think is the best of kind, sold at Sotheby's NY 9/17/92 lot 67 for $20,900: If only this one had the color (particularly the blue in the guls) of the Cassin-Thompson piece, we'd really have the topo Turkmen! Regards, Yon

Subject  :  RE:My nomination for best Turkmen
Author  :  Stephen Louw
Date  :  10-11-1999 on 01:23 p.m.
My dream-team of Turkoman's consists of two stars. Firstly, I nominate the incredible Chodor ertman gul chuval -- published in the Mackie and Thompson book. Secondly, I choose the Freud Tekke bird asmalyk, published in HALI 33, p.12. In both cases, they are of designs that I often find sterile and (dare I say it) a touch boring; illustrating clearly the difference between brilliant works of art and other extant types. In terms of the Chodor chuval, I have yet to see a better use of colour in any weaving. The ertman gul arrangement on chuvals is well known, but oftentimes lends itself to an overcrowded aesthetic. Here the colour, design and "aura" work to opposite effect, creating a piece that genuinely speaks. Bird Asmalyks are not that common, and I have seen only one in the flesh (at the Oriental Art collection in Moscow), as well as about half-a-dozen others illustrated in the literature. However the combination of the colours, border, and the unique rendering of the bird-like figures, makes the Freud piece stand out. In particular, the birds are presented in a manner that is genuinely "fun" and obviously meant to capture something of the gestalt of the occasion for which the piece was woven (probably a wedding). The small creatures above the birds, as well as the stars in the birds, speak volumes. I find similar renderings of human figures in Caucasian and Iranian carpets to be naive and childlike, usually deliberately so, whereas here I am left with questions rather than answers, with a sense of the fun and drama of a (probably) women's art, rather than a catchy image which soon loses its charm. I will have a chance to see the Freud piece in December, and cannot wait. Stephen

Subject  :  Freud's Tekke Asmalyk
Author  :  Steve+Price
Date  :  10-14-1999 on 09:05 a.m.
sprice@hsc.vcu.edu Stephen Louw sent me this image; his message (the previous post in this thread) refers to it. Steve Price

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