A Collection of Oriental and European Carpets and Textiles

a carpet with stylised dragons
northern china
circa 1870
505 x 352 cm (16'8" x 11'7")

Notes: asymmetrically knotted wool pile on a cotton foundation
The drawing seen on of this vigorous example is inspired by Chinese iconography and based on a centralised design obtained by an extreme stylisation of the dragon motif, symbol of the powers of nature. This element can also be seen in the corner spandrels, while the stylised meander pattern framing the composition is also of Chinese origin. The palette, however, is typical of Mongolian carpets, from the ivory background obtained from natural undyed wool to a particular shade of apricot and dark brown used for the design. The rare carpets of Mongolia are further distinguished by the use of lustrous wool of a medium-high shear and by their floppy handle, resulting from the numerous weft passes inserted after each row of knots.



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