Art is a journey into the most unknown thing of all - oneself. Nobody knows his own frontiers… I don’t think I’d ever want to take a road if I knew where it led.

Louis Kahan

The “Mantes” Carpet Northern Iran, second half of the 16th century Pile knotted in wool on cotton foundation, asymmetrical knot H. 7.83 m; W. 3.79 m Formerly in the Collégiale de Mantes Musée du Louvre, acquired 1913 OA 6610. Formerly the property of the church of Notre Dame in Mantes, this handsome carpet documented by Viollet-le-Duc in 1872 probably entered France as a diplomatic gift with a Persian embassy at a remote date. The design is based on the symmetric repetition of the same décor: birds feed their young while deer drink in a duck pond; nearby, a turbaned hunter with his musket takes aim at a lion attacking a gazelle. The medallion in the center and the border feature four panthers as well as the traditional dragon and phoenix combats. Certain details seem to point to a provenance in north-western Iran. Until recently, the musket served to date the carpet, since it was thought that this type of firearm was introduced into Iran only in the late 16th century. A recent study has however revealed that the weapon was a part of the Safavid arsenal at least fifty years earlier than previously thought, so the carpet probably dates back to the second half of the sixteenth century.

http://islamic-arts.org/2011/carpets-from-the-islamic-world/



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