In this category I list recently acquired pieces of all groups and sizes for a duration of maximum 4 months after arrival, thereafter they appear in their respective sections. More images of any lot available on request. Updated 19/8/2018
Originally sold in our showrooms in 1999, this stunning rug was always a favourite, both from a quality and decorative viewpoint. The gracefully drawn design has many curious features such as the "vac-vac" (talking tree) motif hanging from the top of the arch, and the families of cockerel, hen and chicks at the base. The soft, pale blue colour is very rare and highly sought after, contrasting beautifully with the deeper border colours - a masterpiece of Persian rug design and understanding of harmonising colours.
Having spent much of its time on the wall the rug is in excellent condition for its considerable age, complete with original ends and sides, free of repairs apart from some minute spots of side cord binding.
I always knew that DOBAG rugs were hugely superior to anything else woven in Turkey, if not the Orient, today. The thoroughly researched natural dyes, the hand spun winter wool and the exceptional quality of weaving has now proved to be outstanding. This rug has been in constant use for almost 30 years and now, after a good cleaning, it has acquired a patina and glow reminiscent of antique Caucasian rugs. If the next caretaker looks after it well, it will survive for generations to come, and look better as it gets older. Signed S.Y. by the weaver.
The Quashq'ai are a Turkic tribe originally inhabiting Azerbaijan in north-west Persia, gradually moving southwards over the centuries to their current homeland of Fars. Very few migrating nomadic Quashq'ai still maintain a nomadic lifestyle, the vast majority having settled over a century ago around the city of Shiraz.
The 19th Century weavings produced by the tribe prior to settling down were of outstanding quality and artistic merit, undoubtedly the finest of all Persian tribal rugs. This is a genuine example from that time, exquisitely drawn from the weaver's memory, worked "freestyle", i.e. without any pre-drawn design charts, the result being a unique rug filled with her own quirky, charming details. Only natural dyes were used, impervious to light and water, meaning the rug won't lose its colour, nor run if exposed to water.
The rug is in superb, original condition throughout, complete with ends and side cords, in full pile and free of repairs. A rare and very beautiful collector's rug that ideally should be displayed on a wall as a true work of rug art.
A highly decorative 30 year old DOBAG rug of a very useful, and rare, size. The design is highly reminiscent of Turkoman "Bokhara" carpets, yet this style of Anatolian weaving was known from the 16th C. The painter Hans Holbein so often used these rugs in his work that the local DOBAG weavers came to know it as "Holbein".
The rug has been lovingly cared for by its first owners, hence its near perfect condition, with the added glow and patination that good DOBAGs acquire with age. Signed S.C.K.
A very attractive, evocative piece with superb natural colours and spontaneous design, both the hallmarks of good 19th Caucasian village rugs. The weaver has worked entirely from memory, placing the motifs as she saw fit, playing with colour combinations in a way you never come across in later commercial Oriental rugs. Note also the single male with his goat - perhaps this was woven as a gift for an important individual, clearly not woven just for commerce or barter.
The brown wool warp might suggest the weaver was Kurdish - pockets of Kurdish villages exist almost throughout this region - adding to its unique attraction.
Having been owned by a continental family with a strong interest in Oriental rugs, this piece has been very well looked after - apart from the rebound side cords and two minute corner repairs the rug is in very good condition throughout. Reference literature can be supplied by request.
Poushti is a small size rug (meaning cushion) generally used for temporary seating while entertaining guests or dignitaries. In Iran they were never used as floor mats, rather kept in storage or on walls while not in use. This explains why you sometimes come across these little jewels in pristine condition despite over 100 years of age. This finely woven, elegantly drawn Sarouk has superb quality wool and excellent natural colours, free of repairs or alterations. A beautiful gem of a piece of highly decorative merit, for wall or floor.
Good antique Caucasian rugs are highly collectible and decorative, fitting into both classical and contemporary settings. Good examples with only natural dyes, in original condition, are rare and command respectable prices world wide. This charming example is woven on wool and goats' hair warp unlike later pieces woven on cotton. Having been displayed on the wall for generations, the rug is in near perfect condition apart from a couple of minute corner repairs. It was part of a large continental family collection who treated their rug collection as important works of art.
Several comparable reference pieces are published in rug literature such as Schurrman, Caucasian Rugs, Pl 103, and Benardout, Caucasian Rugs, Pl. 39.
A striking, charming and impressive runner woven by a gifted weaver whose mother Cennet was a leading force in the DOBAG project at the time. Playful and quirky, the runner features a large number of typical village life motifs such as houses, animals, butterflies, hearts (for weddings) and much more. Signed H.D. and dated 97.
In its first 21 years the runner had suffered slight moth damage, now completely restored and, following a thorough wash, the piece looks even better than new with its glowing colours and wool patina. A great piece, very hard to replace as the DOBAG project now has come to a virtual end.
An early example of the popular Bakthiari design known locally as "keshti" (lit. checkered) and in the rug trade as garden design. The charming, spontaneous drawing reflects the weaver's imagination, picking different garden motifs for each square, all haphazardly arranged. The natural colours have softened beautifully over the years, the rug now alive with decorative character and atmosphere.
Finely knotted, the rug has very slight but even, overall wear, free of repairs and with its ends and sides intact. The three outer guards are drawn in the sequence and colour of the Persian/Iranian flag, a rare feature I have not come across before.
A beautiful antique carpet featuring the original Tekke gul design later known as "Bokhara" after the town where the nomads traded their weavings. Original examples made before the Russian Revolution are now rare and much sought after as decorative furnishing carpets as well as collector's items.
This carpet features all the qualities of early, non commercial pieces - exceptional silky wool pile knotted at around 170/sq inch, natural dyes and virtually repair free. The original end kilims have been lost, otherwise the carpet is in exceptionally good condition. A rare and beautiful piece that blends in equally well in classical and contemporary settings. This photograph does not do it justice and better images will be posted shortly.
A rock solid DOBAG example with thick, lustrous pile and dense knotting. The offset rows of traditional "oklu" motifs is charmingly lifted by heart and butterfly motifs, signed E.Y. and dated 2007. In perfect condition having been well looked after for 10 years by its first caretaker, now lifted to perfection after a professional wash adding glow and patina to the wonderful quality wool.
An excellent quality DOBAG runner from the number one weaving village in the DOBAG project at its peak. Its founder Dr Harald Bohmer passed away earlier this year and he left an important legacy behind, the DOBAG project now recognised world wide as an important piece of carpet history. This charming runner is dated and signed, featuring Dr Bohmer's favourite DOBAG colour combination. A collector's piece today, set to last for several generations of hard use on the floor.
Few Persian tribes rivalled the powerful Quashq'ai in terms of fineness of weave, choice and quality of colours and also refinement of design. This piece is highly characteristic of their late 19th C work, with a knot count of almost 160/sq inch which gives it a wonderful, supple handle. The range of colours is astonishing for such a small weaving but this type of bag was often woven as an important part of dowry, aiming for the highest quality.
In very good condition with only a tiny amount of repiling, mainly the one ivory line at the lower end. A beautiful thing at a bargain price in today's international rug market.
This is one half of what once was a large double bag (khorjin), basically intended for storage of blankets and utensils but more often woven with exceptional care as part of dowry or important gifts. Knotted at around 135 knots pr square inch, with inlaid details in rare colours like yellow and green, the weaver clearly set out to create something special. Its perfect condition confirms that it was never used for travel or storage, rather kept as an important piece of dowry. For the past decades it has been displayed as a work of art on the wall.
For similar examples, see J. Boucher, Baluchi Woven Treasures, Plates 34 & 35. Please note the two grey circle forms are mere light reflections during photography.
This example is one of the best DOBAG prayer rugs we sold during our 30 years in the Blackrock gallery. Having enjoyed love and care by its previous owner, the rug has come back to us in perfect condition, further enhanced by a proper cleaning. No other newly made Oriental rugs respond better than DOBAGs to full wash treatment, yielding a rich glow and sheen you only find in the best antique village rugs. DOBAG is now all but gone and hence the best of the early, inspired examples if kept in good condition are becoming desirable among collectors world wide. The weaver has signed the rug U.Y. and also dated it 2002.
This beautiful, almost 20 year old DOBAG features a design known as "turnali" (with cranes) after the diagonal chevrons resembling birds in flight. The Metropolitan Museum in New York has an 18th C version of this design woven in nearby Canakale and it can also be found in a 15th C rug painting by Ghirlandaio in the Uffizi, Florence.
In perfect condition throughout showing no wear or loss at ends or sides, the rug has just undergone professional cleaning, bringing a wonderful sheen to the wool and lifting the natural colours to another dimension.
A very beautiful and typical example of Caucasian village rugs woven in the late 19th C. At this time most women all over the Caucasus wove rugs for barter, resale and not least for family occasions. The rugs were woven "free style", the patterns created spontaneously from the weavers' memory, thus creating a unique product every time - the total opposite to the lifeless, sterile factory woven commercial rugs made after the Revolution.
Another reason why antique Caucasian pieces are arguably the most collectible worldwide are the wonderful, all natural colours employed in early examples - in stark contrast to the garish, fugitive synthetic colours used almost everywhere in the region post 1920.
This wonderful rug was sourced in Armenia where it was displayed on a wall for most of its life, hence it is in near perfect condition throughout with original sides and ends intact, almost full pile and only small spots of the usual corrosive black wool. A rare and highly collectible rug in today's market..
A great example of the famous DOBAG rugs, woven at a time when the project was still going strong. Today only a very small number of rugs are woven and only a small number of families are still involved. This beautiful DOBAG illustrates how great they once were - great, open design, good proportions and a great eye for colour harmony on part of the weaver who has signed and dated it 2001. Having been in daily use for 16 years and lovingly looked after, the rug has been professionally hand washed, now glowing like a jewel with beginnings of the patina seen in great rugs from centuries past. In perfect, original condition.