Title: Persian Kashan Carpet
Size: 4.18×3.02m / 13’9″x9’11″
Origin: Kashan, Central Persia (Iran).
Technique: Handknotted. Double weft construction. Approx: 120kpsi.
Material: Wool pile, cotton warp and weft.
Colours and Design: Red field with dark blue medallion and border. Floral, curvilinear design. Signed.
Condition/Age: Full pile. 0-20 years old.
The oasis town of Kashan lies in central Iran between Isfahan and Qum on the edge of the Dasht-i-Kavir desert.
Kashan has a rich heritage in crafts from pottery and tile-work to textiles, rugs and carpets. Indeed, the master-weaver Maksoud of the Ardebil Carpet (AD. 1540) in the Victoria and Albert Museum (London) was from Kashan. The Ardebil Carpet represents possibly the most famous surviving article of woven art from the Safavid period (AD. 1502-1722). This golden age was ended by the Afghan invasion of 1722.
The weaving tradition in Kashan was revived towards the end of the nineteenth century; this was in part due to the expansion of international trade and also because of a surplus of wool stocks.
Kashan rugs are woven on a vertical loom with a woollen pile formed by the Persian (or Senneh) knot on a cotton warp and weft. The weft thread is distinctive in that it is (usually) blue in colour. The colour scheme employed is conservative with extensive use of reds and blues.
In recent decades Kashan has produced white Kashan rugs which are influenced by the colour schemes associated with Nain and Isfahan. The design of Kashan rugs is curvilinear, usually medallion style; the medallion is usually elongated.
There are a number of villages outside of Kashan that weave rugs and carpets that are sometimes given the Kashan label. Natanz rugs are of an exceptionally fine weave and are usually asymmetrical in design often with a mihrab, and these are only woven in small sizes. Harun rugs and carpets represent the other end of the spectrum in that they are more of a village (rough and coarse) weave and are considerably cheaper than the true product of Kashan.
The Oriental Rug Merchant, 11 High Street, Tunbridge Wells, Kent, TN1 1UL, UK