• Oriental Rugs and Carpets auction at Christies

    Sale 11939

    Oriental Rugs and Carpets

    18 October 2016, London, King Street

  • Lot 49

    A LARGE ISFAHAN CARPET FRAGMENT

    CENTRAL PERSIA, EARLY 17TH CENTURY

    Estimate

    A LARGE ISFAHAN CARPET FRAGMENT
    CENTRAL PERSIA, EARLY 17TH CENTURY
    Extensively worn throughout, corroded brown, scattered repairs, lacking end border, partially backed
    24ft.9in. x 14ft.10in. (752cm. x 452cm.)


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    Persian red-ground carpets with scrolling arabesques terminating in palmettes that are framed by a deep indigo or green border of corresponding design, are one of the most familiar groups of 17th century carpets that have survived to the present day. The popularity of these weavings is attested by the sheer number depicted in Dutch and Flemish paintings of the period, which also support their dating. Despite this however, there has been considerable discussion about their place of manufacture, at times being attributed to Herat or India and often termed ‘Indo-Isfahan’. In more recent history it has been generally accepted that Isfahan was the production centre for these carpets whose popularity soared throughout the first half of the 17th century and were subsequently woven in great quantities for export to Europe. Within this substantial group there are a number of design variations, a carpet which exhibits the more angular and tighter drawing of one variant was offered in the Christie’s New York, 18 December 2002, lot 100. In contrast, the design of the present lot shows a much grander scale and more open drawing in both the saz leaves and cloudbands of the field and the palmettes of the main border. The cloudbands are arranged in a 2:1 formation which accentuates the central vertical axis but also emphasises the sheer breadth of the design. These features are expertly incorporated into a harmonious overall design that is only enhanced by the subtle nuances in colour, which although now very worn, show that it once included a varied palette. Measuring almost 25 feet without one end border, this was once a most impressive carpet.

    Special Notice

    Specified lots (sold and unsold) marked with a filled square not collected from Christie’s by 5.00 pm on the day of the sale will, at our option, be removed to Cadogan Tate. Christie’s will inform you if the lot has been sent offsite. Our removal and storage of the lot is subject to the terms and conditions of storage which can be found at Christies.com/storage and our fees for storage are set out in the table. These will apply whether the lot remains with Christie’s or is removed elsewhere. If the lot is transferred to Cadogan Tate, it will be available for collection from 12 noon on the second business day following the sale. If the lot remains at Christie’s it will be available for collection on any working day 9.00am to 5.00pm. Lots are not available for collection at weekends.


    Pre-Lot Text

    PROPERTY FROM A PRIVATE ITALIAN LADY