3) The Lotus Palmette.This is the Palmette form often seen on Vase Carpets.
4) The Palmette with Cross.This is formed by a four and one design between Palmettes.
5) The Ragged Palmette.The most frequently occuring,in many variations.Also used on Large Medallion Ushaks.
The remaining border designs all feature leaf motifs.
7) Overlapping Saz Leaf.
8) Straight Saz Leaf.
A group with more densely packed design incorporates some important pieces.
Sold at the Loges sale in 1994 the following noble wreck follows its own dramatic logic to a wild and unruly denoument.$55,890 at Sothebys 19 October 1994(239)
The Burnay Collection RGF in Lisbon is crammed with sinuous cloudbands, acanthus (or lotus) leaves and enterprising Palmettes.An uncommon bluegreen ground with red border and unattributed coat of arms.
Once with Cittone,and now in Qatar,the following was sold at Christies London for $189,540 in 1997.The APG in Hali 93(127)compared it unfavourably to the Rothschild example,but its star had risen somewhat when it came to be reviewed again in Hali 175(129)Silk warp and white cotton filling.
|133-Christies 24 April 1997(530)|
Similarity and diversity are demonstrated by the following three pieces from the Clark Collection,no doubt chosen by the Senator for their decorative harmony and sold at the warm-up Corcoran auction by Christies on 24 November 2009.
|134-Lot 29-$134,500(now Farjam Coillection)|
Published by Pope in 1939,from the Loewe Collection,with inner green and orange border
Finally,from the Barbara Johnson Collection,with incisive vinescrolls
|138-Sothebys 15 October 2003(42)|
Exquisite pieces were also produced in smaller sizes.The most beautiful of all is probably the Coimbra rug in Lisbon
A second carpet in Lisbon is more reticent with softer colour
Elegant,but with harder contours is a piece from the Kevorkian Collection sold at Sothebys in 1977
At least three large carpets are known with white or yellowground borders
The Eskenazi example was once in the Imperial Collection, Vienna and was auctioned after the first World War to pay for reparations.It originally had a brown-ground border,said to have corroded,but it has probably been completely removed in the later photo.
One major border not described above is the Cartouche or Tabula Ansata design,actually a category to itself.A number of RGFs are known with this design but they are too diverse to really form a group.The classic octafoil and half-cartouche form is a tri-partite design.It can be varied into unrecognition such as on the now missing Cassirer carpet,once in Berlin,which integrates large arabesque elements
With a similar border of horizontally placed cartouches,and much favoured by Hali`s editorial team,was a rug sold at Christies in 1994
A rug at Williamsburg replaces the ornate arabesques with simple cloudbands and metal-thread highlights
Shown in Hamburg,perhaps with a cut border.
Sold at Lefevre in 1979 and again at Rippon Boswell`s in 1979 for $95,160 the following reconfigured carpet once in the Proehl Collection,and on a silk warp, has a simplified "Ardabil" type border
A small carpet in Coimbra features a central medallion forged from Split -Palmettes and mirrored in the border
Actually quite rare are two RGF carpets with almost identical design
Presumably much cut down the item from the Keir Collection with elaborate vinescrolls seems early
Yerkes XI is now in Tehran
Published in 1908 by von Scala,an item from the Tucher Collection later surfaced after the war in Amsterdam
Naturally Senator Clark also owned such a carpet,in a simpler style,sold at Sothebys Corcoran auction for $137,000
One last piece resides in the MAK as a fragment
A further important group features a streamlining of design. The carpets become lighter and airier.Typical are three examples once with the Italian dealer Cittone,the king of RGFs.The borders also change dramatically from the old ragged palmette.
Also in this style is a fragment in the Thyssen-Bornemisza Collection
Two similar items were sold respectively at Christies in 2007( $148,00;previously sold for $159,080 in April 2000)and at the Corcoran Sale in 2013 for $281,000
An example in the Farjam Collection can be compared to a more densely patterned carpet in Lyons
A cut and joined example from the Dirksen Collection sale of 1931 features an arabesque loop border
Thick vinescroll bracketing dominates the field of a carpet from the Lees William Collection in Philadelphia
The field of a carpet from the duPont Collection published by Pope is more densely packed,and one half is squeezed into the field
A carpet from Danny Ghigo is dominated by stiff scrolling vines concentrated around the focal point
A carpet in the Poldi Pezzoli compared with a piece in the Philadelphia Museum of Art,attributed by Ellis to Agra but with 4-ply warp;many of these carpets form a central medallion "by inference"-
The author is still uncertain as to whether the following two pieces are similar,or the same!
A carpet in the Thyssen-Bornemisza collection echoes nicely the "Emperor`s" investiture Palmettes,but large Saz leaves suddenly make an appearance
It seems the group as a whole was swept up in "Sazmania"
A further development employs thick outlining,pastel colour,and much Saz and cloudband.The following example from the Clark Collection sale fetched $437,000, and was once in the Collection of Henry Marquand
An auction recidivist and classic of type is the "Maldonado" carpet sold at St.Cyr in 1982 with re-sales at Sothebys in 1989 and a last triumph in New York in 1998 where it brought a top-lot $112,000
|177-Sothebys 15 April 1998(230)|
Another repeat offender has been auctioned at least three times since 1993.So enamoured of it was the Hali Editorial team that it was reviewed each time.It fetched succesively 101,500(1993)$107,550(2002)and$122,500(2010),showing true investment value.
|178-Sothebys 1993 and 2002,Christies 22 October 2010|
From the Ojjeh sale and later Ambassador Aita,the following with a "Crossed" Palmette border and thick pastel outlines fetched $ 52,880 at Christies London on 29 April 2004
A carpet from the MET`s Robert Lehman Collection
And a pair of very similar Wildenstein-Ojjeh`s
Some of the most elegant smaller pieces were made in a simpler style
Three pieces were once with Vitali Benguiat
A piece sold at Christies can be compared to a rug in the Boston Fine Arts Museum
Or a carpet at Coimbra lined up against a simpler model from Sothebys
Two close relatives at the Clark Sale featured exquisite Lotus Palmettes obviously influenced by the LaFoes Carpet
But two rugs from the Ballard and Keir Collections appear "wrong" respectively
A number of medallion carpets are known,starting with a large piece in the Gulbenkian Museum
Sold at Sothebys on 11 October 2004(68)the following hithertoo unknown carpet contained metal-thread brocading,alas poorly repaired,but still managed a hefty $111,000
Another rug with metal-thread(and cotton highlights)was sold at Christies in 2014 from the estate of Barbara Johnson,and represents a kind of RGF-Polonaise hybrid($139,025)
The crossover also worked in reverse,with some silk Polonaise carpets imitating the RGFs
An unusual carpet with allover medallion and Saz from the Getty Museum,and later with Yves Mikaeloff,was sold for $77,000 at Sothebys in September 1991,but fell through at Christies in 2013.Perhaps it was too worn out?Such carpets should rarely be wet-cleaned.
|194-Christies 8 October 2013(127)|
A frequently illustrated carpet from the Thyssen collection has exceptionally symmetrical drawing,perhaps too even to be a really old piece.The medallion formed with split palmettes and two curious"fat parrots" at the start of the field.
An old face at the auctions is Sothebys 2004 fragment
A few examples exist with rounded medallions.Starting with the best of the Lehman Collection,a carpet illustrated by Pope when it was with French & Co.
Sold at Christies London in 1988 for $49,368, a rare near perfect condition rug with an early looking medallion;and a very small(86 x 107 cms) Indian influenced ruglet which brought $34,500 at Sothebys New York in 1998(after its apparent pair had fetched just 1000 pounds at a small London sale!)
One group of carpets has received extensive attention far beyond their actual occurence.They feature acanthus leaves and saz and stem from a standardised model.Perhaps the earliest of thee carpets still retains its chinese cloudbands,and has been a frequent visitor to the salesrooms over the years,starting in 1903 at the Marquand Sale,then at the Benguiats Auction of 1925.In our time at Sothebys London in 1976(30.000 pounds),then from the British rail pension Fund(!),Sothebys 1996(133,500 pounds)and finally at Christies London in 2007 where it brought 180,000 pounds($357,480)
|199-The Marquand |
A classic example in the simpler style is the Altman carpet in the MET.
One of two Getty carpets with this design features an arabesque loop border and was once in the Mortimer Schiff Collection.Sold at Sothebys New York on 8 December 1990(5) for $ 82,500.
A pair to this carpet was offered at Sothebys in 1976
|202-Sothebys 4 April 1976(54)|
A second Getty carpet was sold for $121,000 at Sothebys in 1990.Carpets withis design were likely to have been the forerunners of the "Herati" design. See: http://www.rugtracker.com/2014/09/on-origin-of-herati-pattern.html
A carpet from the Thyssen-Bornemisza Collection.
Three further examples.
|206-Lefevre 16 May 1975(10)|
|207-Christies 3 May 2001(121)|
A last example with cartouche border,the Holms Hepburn,was used a number of times at Coronations.Sold for $134,555 at Lyon & Turnbull in 2014.Unsold at Sothebys in 2015.
A last coherent group in Saz style begins with the swashbuckling LaFoes carpet of Senator Clark,sold at the Corcoran Sale for $4,645,00 on 5 June 2013 in New York.
Since the Corcoran/Clark sale the Duke of Braganza has become a household name in rug circles.He must have had a vast collection!At least according to Vitali Benguiat,from whom the following carpets issued,one to Thyssen,the other to Edsel Ford.
A denser style was in evidence at the 2009 Corcoran/Clarks sale,to which can also be added a carpet once belonging to Lady Dudley(also via Benguiat)and now in Tehran
|219-M `Lady Dudley|
A finer and denser style was achieved in three pieces.A carpet once with Judge Gary and now in Tehran
The Tabbagh carpet which went to Moshe Tabibnia in Milan via C.John
And a virtually unknown piece in the Victoria and Albert Museum London
A group of large carpet with a ragged palmette and straight Saz border are said by some to be Indian.There are two types:an overall Saz design,and a multi-quatrefoil medallion.
Two carpets are very similar.The Bausback Carpet is said to be from our old friend the Duke of Braganza,the other belonged to Sir Herbert Wernher,and was the settlement of a gambling debt.(sold Sothebys London 11 October 1990-735- for $32,175)
A carpet in the Met`s Lehman Collection includes curved Saz in the borders.
Another carpet from Luton Hoo was sold at Christies London on 26 April 1990(106)
The best three carpets with allover medallion are as follows.
|228-Johnson Collection Sothebys 15 March 2003(40)|
As ever,cut and reduced items make excellent furnishing items,beloved of decorators for their handy sizes,invariably recycled for their beauty and poise
|229-Rippon Boswell 20 May 2000(156)|
|230-Christies 8 October 2013(98)-12,500 pounds|
|231-Artcurial 20 June 2012(341)-$109,550|
|233-Corcoran/Clark Sothebys 5 June 2013-$28,125|
A group of individually designed carpets concludes this review.They are all in the large kelleh format,chiefly with arabesque designs,and seem not to have been collated.Their closest relatives are the carpets with strapwork fields,such as at Jaipur,and indeed an example sold at the 2009 Christies/Corcoran for $122,500.
|235-Christies 24 November 2009(133)|
Another splendid example is in the MET,ex Kevorkian.
An example at Boughton House.
A fragment in Montreal.
The fabulous Widener carpet
A fragment from the David Sylvester Collection with the same border
A medallion carpet sold at Christies in 1993 for $30,430,with a very similar piece from Martin,1908(published in Hendley)
A Vienna war casualty burnt in 1945; published in Sarre-Trenkwald.
A marvellous carpet in the Gulbenkian Museum in Lisbon.
Of which another two fragmented examples are recorded.
Three fragments conclude this part of the survey, a shard from a vaporised Berlin carpet,and an item once belonging to Kelekian.
|247-Berlin,note grinning skull|
At the time of writing an interesting fragment appeared at auction,with blue ground,which surely belongs here.
|248a-Rippon Boswell 13 June 2015(75)|