Monday, January 10, 2011

The Map Rug

by Ryan Reitmeyer on January 10, 2011

There is nothing quite as satisfying in this business as spending days sifting through rug after rug—and be rewarded with a truly unique find. This rug was discovered on our last buying trip and it has captured the attention of everyone in the shop. It’s a map of the world, plotted out knot-by-knot across the field of this 9x12 rug, woven in Meshad sometime in the 1950s.
Walking across this rug is such a personal experience; it almost encourages one to visit places familiar as well as dare to explore the unknown just under foot. Originally created for the lobby of a travel agency in New York, this rug has tremendous style, charm and a great history. The land masses were woven with a thicker pile so that they are raised slightly above the blue of the oceans. There is even a legend woven into the lower left corner to guide the viewer along mountain chains, rivers and desert plains. Geography itself becomes the design, resulting in a carpet that is both beautiful and inquisitive.

Thinking about how this rug would function in a room recalls this interior by Ruhlmann for the office of the crown prince of India, c. 1929. The map in the background is almost too large to serve any functional purpose, yet it dominates the interior, decoratively as well as psychologically.


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