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Let us Pray
randdmiller Offline
#1 Posted : Tuesday, March 16, 2010 8:39:54 AM(UTC)
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My favorite type of oriental textile is prayer rugs.

The below links show some samples of what I've collected over the last 3 years.


First image - Early 20th century prayer rug. Apparently Central Anatolia (attributed to Malatya). Lots of slit embroidery.
This piece is very delicate. There's metalic thread spun into the design to highlight parts of the piece.
I suspect the metal is silver, since it has tarnished some, and stained the wool in a few spots. Purchased in Istanbul from Gallery Shirvan.

Second image --- supposedly an Ensi. I think it's an Ersari Ensi wannabe. Still - it's cute. Wool pile melts in your hands --- knot density is on the low side.
Picked this up from a friend's collection. He lived in Shiraz for 10 years.

Third image - reportedly Balouch prayer rug. Again - exceptionally soft --- well worn. Definately prayed upon a lot (the pile is depressed in the center of the top section).
Brittle goat hair over-cast on the sides (I think the acid in the dye made the thread brittle) I picked this one up from a Balouchi taxi driver, when I lived in Arabia.

http://img219.imageshack...9043/prayerkilimng0.jpg

http://img219.imageshack...img219/7784/ensiyf2.jpg

http://img68.imageshack....mg68/290/balouchlj6.jpg




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randdmiller Offline
#2 Posted : Wednesday, March 17, 2010 7:33:32 PM(UTC)
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comments/critiques/thoughts?

Junk/interesting/heirlooms?

Obviously, these pieces float my boat. I don't typically spend a lot on my pieces ---- but I think a couple of them might be worth holding on to.
bukhara Offline
#3 Posted : Wednesday, March 17, 2010 11:40:10 PM(UTC)
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Hi,

First image - I think 30-40 years old. No more.

Second image - Kargai rug from Afghanistan. Ersari Ensi design, These rugs are made by Uzbek and Ersari people who live in Afghanistan. New or 10-15 years old.

Third image - Standard Baluch. In many stores you can find thousands of similar. New , max 20 years old
RugPro Offline
#4 Posted : Thursday, March 18, 2010 6:29:47 AM(UTC)
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the second one is really nice.

The first is probably accurate. Turkish. do you have more images of the silver?
Shereen Offline
#5 Posted : Thursday, March 18, 2010 9:13:14 AM(UTC)
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I like the ensi, too. Note that ensis are not prayer rugs, though.

You can test the silver by putting a tiny tiny amount of silver polish on the metal thread, then rub carefully. But this has to be done really very carefully so that the polish doesn't so much as touch the wool fibers. (I've used a Q-tip for this purpose in the past.)

The picture of the Turkish rug makes it hard to see the details. If it has only four colours, it is probably not early 20th century, but later.
randdmiller Offline
#6 Posted : Thursday, March 18, 2010 7:02:06 PM(UTC)
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A couple of close-up images ---- the silver thread is focused in the white part of the field.

The prayer rug has a lot of slits in it ---- so it's really more like a soumak than a pure kilim.

The receipt - says "Central Anatolian from Malatya, early part of 20th century - originally a wedding gift"


http://img511.imageshack...100/bestcatchabrash.jpg

http://img511.imageshack...g511/244/bestcatch2.jpg


Several dealers here in Colorado recognize the dealer, saying he has a fairly good reputation, world-wide.
Shereen Offline
#7 Posted : Friday, March 19, 2010 6:50:37 AM(UTC)
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Hi,

It's not clear to me what you mean by "slit embroidery". The slits in certain Anatolian and Persian Kilims are simply the result of using different colours in the same row, for several rows, where the weaver uses the same thread going "backwards" as it were in the rows. So after a few rows, a slit builds up.

Your close-ups suggest that you have a kilim with slit-technique, not soumak.

Soumak is a weaving technique that wraps wefts around warps. It is not embroidery.

Embroidery can, and is sometimes, be used on Kilims, for additional embellishments, but it does not usually add slits.

Antique Malatya Kilims tend to be wool on wool. The photo doesn't show whether the foundation is wool or cotton.

Woven silver metal patches usually appear very dark grey due to oxidation.





randdmiller Offline
#8 Posted : Friday, March 19, 2010 8:33:35 AM(UTC)
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Anatolian prayer kilim
Shereen --- Sorry - my descriptions are jumping around.

Yes - There are lots of slits on my piece.

It's not a pure kilim. When you flip it over, you see lots of excess material (whereas a typical kilim looks the same front and back).

Yes - there are a few spots of grey from the silver oxidizing (my photos were selective). The spots don't really spoil the image, though --- they just give it some depth.

The dealer's note does say "wool on wool"

Ensi
The alleged Ensi attracted me when I thought it was a prayer rug (I saw the niche). The owner explained what an Ensi was. I've seen this same pattern mimicked by a few contemporary replicas (not real Ensis) in Dubai rug markets. Mine has much larger knots. My blue shows some variation (abrash). More apparent when you fold the rug, and compare the top and bottom blues. The warp/weft is very soft (grab a clump in your hand - and it melts). I had a small tear repaired (notice the white field along the border in the bottom right side, where it should be cream). The knots are single knots - open on the left (not the Turkish double knot). The repair guy said it was around 50 years old. This doesn't look as much like an Ensi as I'd expect, though ---- so either it's a wannabe (my conclusion) --- or it was simply made by a beginner (possible - look at the awful alignment and symetry in the design).

My friend from Shiraz lived there in the mid 70s (30 years ago) - so I think that sounds about right. (he actually picked it up in Mashaad
--- which I think is a drop point for Ersari pieces) .

No romantic notions, here - I simply think it's a neat looking piece.


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