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after restoration

Christie's antique Star Kazak Shikli rug, 3rd quarter 19th century, possibly Shikhli village, Kazak Region, Western Azerbaijan. so called "D" type

Christie's Fine European and Oriental Carpets,
New York, Tuesday, December 17th, 1996 at 10 AM.

Lot 7 - A Star Kazak Rug, Southwest Caucasus, 3rd quarter 19th Century

The cream field with a traditional polychrome Star Kazak design within a maize hooked lozenge border in crimson, teal, and indigo.

Approximately 7ft. 4 in. x 5 ft. 6 in.

Warp: wool, light beige-tan, natural 1 strand plied with wool, medium brown, natural, 1 strand, Z2S overall.
Weft: a. wool, dyed light red brown, Z2s, 2 - 5 shoots alternating equally wavy; or b. wool, dyed blue, natural, Z2S, as a.: a few partial yellow woolZ2 shoots.
Pile: wool, Z2, symmetric knots, no warp depression, H 6-7 x V5
Sides: 2 bundles of 2 body warps banded in blue and red Z2 wool, or all blue.
Ends: top, 3/8 in. weft faced Z2 wool blue plainweave; bottom, not original.
Colors: canary, ivory, dark blue, aubergine, rust, medium blue, medium green, brown-black.

Star Kazaks have long been among the most coveted of all Caucasian rugs to modern day collectors. Their desirability, most likely caused by their powerful design and their bold, varied palette is heightened by their rarity. The present rug can be classified s Star Kazak type D as discussed by Hali Vol. 3, No 1 in 1980 (see Star Kazak Hali, Vol.3. No. I. 1980, pp. 17-26). This group shares many common elements, the first being the dimensions of the rug of length; width as 1:2. Other similar details are the interior hooked motif in the red star octagon, the internal brackets of the central star. the aubergine arrows and the reciprocal triangle minor border in red and blue. The main border of hooked lozenge containing four "C" shapes is also the same on all the rugs of this group and is an aberration of the crab device border.

The present example closely resembles a Star Kazak from the James F. Ballard Collection in the Metropolitan Museum of Art. (Dimand and Mailey, Oriental Rugs in the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York. 1973. fig. 240). The only difference between this piece and the Ballard rug are the minor secondary elements such as the diamonds on the field and in the interior of the arrows seen here in our example. Another close example from the same group is in the possession of Peter Bausback (Hali. Vol. I. No. 4, 1979, page 60). They share in common the vertical rows of enclosed star motifs down the sides of the field, as well as the small diamonds which fill the field, as well as the small diamonds which fill the field and hooked devices.

Estimates: $30,000 - 40,000