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OTTOMAN CARPETS IN THE XVI - XVII CENTURIES (16-17TH CENTURIES)



 

Double Niche Ushak Prayer rug, 16th century, Western Anatolia, Turkey, Ottoman Empire


Price Realized 59,475 ($90,699)

Sale Information
Christies SALE 1116
ORIENTAL RUGS AND CARPETS
23 April 2013
London, King Street

Lot Description
A SMALL MEDALLION USHAK RUG
WEST ANATOLIA, LATE 16TH CENTURY
Uneven overall wear, scattered areas of repair, outer stripe slightly reduced, surface dirt
5ft.2in. x 3ft.4in. (157cm. x 102cm.)

Lot Notes
The earliest example of a 'double-niche' or 'small medallion' Ushak rug appears in Europe in a painting by Girolamo da Santacroce, The Calling of Saint Matthew' dating from 1517 (John Mills, 'The Coming of the Carpet to the West', The Eastern Carpet in the Western World, exhibition catalogue, London, 1983, p.16). Shortly after this, a rug of very similar design to the present example is depicted in The Annunciation by Jacob Claes van Utrecht (O.Ydema, Carpets and their datings in Netherlandish Paintings, Zutphen, 1991, p.40). Pictorial evidence however suggests that very similar rugs continued to be made throughout the century and into the next.

The present rug represents the second type of double niche Ushak rug, with cloudband border. A very similar example is in the Keir Collection, but with added elements in the longer field and with plain striped guard stripes (Friedrich Spuhler, Islamic Carpets and Textiles in the Keir Collection, London, 1978, no.24, p.52 and col.pl.p.54). The colouring of the border, spandrels and medallion are identical. Other similar examples are published in the Textile Museum (L.Mackie, The Splendour of Turkish Weaving, Washington, 1973, no.36, p.36), the McMullan Collection, with central blue medallion, (Joseph V. McMullan, Islamic Carpets, New York, 1965, no.83, pp.262-3), the Metropolitan Museum (M.S. Dimand and J. Mailey, Oriental Rugs in the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, 1973, no.81, p.224), the Ballard Collection (James F. Ballard, Catalogue of Oriental Rugs in the Collection of James F. Ballard, St. Louis, 1924, no.71), and with Herrmann (Eberhart Herrmann, Seltene Orientteppiche X, Munich, 1988, no.5, pp.22-23). The Textile and Metropolitan Museum examples together with the Ballard rug share the yellow quatrefoil medallion seen in this rug. Most of these examples are ascribed dates of the late sixteenth or early seventeenth century; the Metropolitan dating of 'early XVIII century' one assumes is a misprint.

While there has been some old and crude restoration on this rug, the colours have been superbly preserved, demonstrating the vitality of these rugs at their best.
 

 

 The calling of Saint Matthew, 1517

by Girolamo da Santacroce  (c.1480/85 - c.1556)

Musei di Bassano del Grappa