All of Classical Carpet's
patterns are inspired by what are called by scholars and
collectors the "classical" Anatolian carpets, those carpets
dating from the 13th through the 17th centuries, produced in the
area known today as Turkey, in both court and commercial
workshops, for domestic use as well as for export, that were
made in such quantities, obviously in response to a great
demand, that they developed into “types”, that are clearly
distinguished, and recognized, so to a great extent, even though
these are anonymous craft artifacts, we can trace the actual
genesis of the individual designs over time, as well as their
relationship to each other.
Like classical music, or
classical architecture, these designs are held up as emblematic,
as amongst the highest manifestation of this craft, one that has
rarely been equaled.
An esopecially noteworthy
aspect of these designs is that they are a central part of a fantastic
global, cross cultural exchange, as when these rugs were first
discovered in the West, brought back to Europe by the Venetian
and Portuguese traders, they were documented by some of the
great Renaissance painters, including in Italy by Lotto, Ghirlandaio, Bellini, Crivelli and Tintoretto, and in Northern
Europe by Holbein, Memling, Vermeer, and many others. One of
the critical ways we have of tracing the history and development
of these patterns is through their depiction in these
old master paintings.
A significant thing about this
cultural exchange is that is not just across political and
ethnic lines, but across religions as well. These particular
carpets served as venerated objects used by several of the
world’s great spiritual traditions, all with an important role
in their creation and dissemination.