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VOK COLLECTION, Selection II

Saturday 12. March 2016 at 3 p.m.

88 Lots
  • Sivrihisar Zili

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    • Lot109
    • Originwestern Central Anatolia, Eskisehir province
    • Dimensions160 x 117 cm
    • Age2nd half 19th century
    • Estimate EUR1,500 - 1,800
    VOK Collection, Anatolia 18

    This small-format flatweave belongs to the group of Anatolian zilis (formerly known as cicim). All the motifs seen in this symmetrically conceived and precisely drawn design are brocaded. Divided into two halves by a vertical bar placed on the central axis and decorated with three large diamonds, the ivory field contains diamonds of varying size and interior drawing arranged in rows as well as eight octagons. The narrow border shows diamonds aligned in a row, and the elems are each decorated with four horizontal rows of small S-shaped motifs. Flower-like three-pointed devices are seen along all the vertical axes. The subdued colour scheme and coherent mirror-image composition create a harmonious and meditative expression. According to Hirsch, this zili served as a wall hanging or wall niche curtain. The Vakiflar Museum in Istanbul owns a very similar example (inv. no. 52) originally in the Takvacilar Mosque of Kütahya. – Patinated with age, various stains. Good overall condition.

    Literature:
    BALPINAR, BELKIS & HIRSCH, UDO, Flachgewebe des Vakiflar-Museums Istanbul. Wesel 1982, no. 102 *** FRAUENKNECHT, BERTRAM, Frühe türkische Tapisserien. Nuremberg 1984, no. 57

    Published:
    VOK, IGNAZIO, Vok Collection. Anatolia. Kilims and other Flatweaves from Anatolia. (Text by Udo Hirsch) Munich 1997, no. 18

  • Ottoman Striped Kilim

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    • Lot110
    • OriginWest Anatolia, Manisa province
    • Dimensions265 x 152 cm
    • Age18th century
    • Estimate EUR9,000 - 12,000
    VOK Collection, Anatolia 2

    The Vok Collection includes two examples of these rare striped kilims. Presenting the same design layout, they appear very similar at first glance, but a closer look reveals distinct differences between them. The first example of comparatively coarse weave (Anatolia 1) was sold in April 2015. The second example offered now (Anatolia 2) is finer in weave, richer in colour range, different in design repertoire, and its overall appearance is not rustic. It has an elegant and courtly look. – It now seems certain that the striped kilims presenting Ottoman floral designs were woven in workshops in the West Anatolian province of Manisa. Kula or Selendi are possible provenances. In the Ottoman period, both cities were important centres of textile production, which included commissions for the court or the nobility. – The design of wide stripes, alternately decorated with floral and geometric motifs in the Ottoman style, is a characteristic feature of this distinctive group. The kilims were probably used as wall hangings – like tapestries – and may have adorned the magnificent tents of Ottoman pashas during their frequent campaigns. – In this item, the wide design bands show trees decorated with tulips, alternately placed on a blue, brown or red ground. The direction of the trees changes at the exact centre of the weaving. With just two exceptions, the flanking geometric dividing stripes also change direction at the centre. In the narrower design bands, offset diamonds are combined into composite braid-like shapes that appear to flow, alternately on a white or a light yellow ground. – Very good condition.

    Literature:
    PETSOPOULOS, YANNI, Der Kelim. Ein Handbuch. Munich 1980, no. 65 *** RIPPON BOSWELL, A 39, 13th November 1993, # 112 and A 59, 16th November 2002, # 61 *** VOK, IGNAZIO, Vok Collection. Anatolia. Kilims and other Flatweaves from Anatolia. (Text by Udo Hirsch) Munich 1997, no. 1 *** BRÜGGEMANN, WERNER, Yayla. Form und Farbe in türkischer Textilkunst. Frankfurt 1993, pl. 33

    Published:
    VOK, IGNAZIO, Vok Collection. Anatolia. Kilims and other Flatweaves from Anatolia. (Text by Udo Hirsch) Munich 1997, no. 2

  • Shakhrisyabz Suzani

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    • Lot111
    • OriginCentral Asia, South West Uzbekistan
    • Dimensions262 x 183 cm
    • Agemid 19th century
    • Estimate EUR30,000 - 35,000
    VOK Collection, Suzani 1, 22

    The field of this precious suzani is covered in a diamond lattice composed of slender blue-green leaves. The entire ground, including that of the border, is very finely embroidered in thin golden metal threads in the chain stitch technique. The graceful undulating lines of the metal threads constitute an underlying basic design in their own right, creating an effect of gentle movement and plasticity. Each of the diamond-shaped compartments contains a finely-drawn eight-pointed cross with four larger blossoms and four small buds at its ends. Slightly modified versions of the same motif can be found in the main border, where they are complemented by four pairs of sickle leaves arranged around them and interspersed with long diagonal panicles and further blossoms. The fact that all the designs are finely embroidered in the kanda khayol technique indicates a provenance in Shakhrisyabz, as do the vines surrounding small botehs in the secondary borders. – The enormous expenditure of materials and distinct court style suggest that this elegant suzani was commissioned from a workshop, possibly for the Emir of Bokhara. Its subtle pastel shades and delicate drawing are reminiscent of Ottoman embroideries. It is well known that the emir maintained relations with the sultan’s court, but whether these led to a cultural exchange remains a matter of speculation. – Slight signs of age and wear, small repaired areas, good overall condition. Mounted onto canvas.

    Published:
    VOK, IGNAZIO, Vok Collection. Suzani. A Textile Art from Central Asia. (Text by Jakob Taube) Munich 1994, no. 22

  • Bokhara? Suzani

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    • Lot112
    • OriginCentral Asia, South West Uzbekistan
    • Dimensions270 x 152 cm
    • Age1st half 19th century
    • Estimate EUR38,000 - 42,000
    VOK Collection, Suzani 2, 49

    Lacking any comparable examples in literature, this intriguing suzani raises many questions. All the specialists we consulted immediately recalled the item, but none of them wished to venture an opinion as to its provenance, date, purpose or art historical classification. They all agreed that it is a textile of extraordinary beauty and charisma, but one that will have to remain a "mystery piece". Composed of two wide panels, the delicate cotton foundation resembling a muslin fabric was woven from machine-spun yarn. The fabric may have been imported from India. The embroidery in the chain stitch technique is extremely fine, uniformly even and executed to great perfection, possibly using a tambour hook. Only the red blossom at the centre of the plain field, surrounded by four fully embroidered seams is in the basma technique. The central motif is reminiscent of certain representations of the cosmos seen in medieval European book illumination and may be a later addition. Three corners of the wide main border are accentuated by three large motifs – heart-shaped palmettes at the bottom and deeply incised circular blossoms resembling toothed wheels at the top – with slender blue twigs twining around them. The lateral sections contain large unconnected branches decorated with blossoms and fruit, all of them pointing outwards. One of the branches is bearing pomegranates. All the designs are drawn in an extremely elegant and lively style of Indian appearance. It is striking that most of the designs have accentuated outlines, some of them in different colours. The secondary borders are reminiscent of Bokhara or Kermina embroideries, and it is possible that the suzani was made in a workshop in one of those cities. However, this is a matter of speculation. The secondary borders have been left unfinished in the upper right-hand corner. In the light of the perfect craftsmanship displayed in this workshop example, this sense of the incomplete poses a further mystery. – Signs of age and wear, several stains. The outer borders have been lost in places. Mounted onto canvas.

    Published:
    VOK, IGNAZIO, Vok Collection. Suzani 2. A Textile Art from Central Asia. (Text by Jakob Taube) Munich 2006, no. 49

  • Ura Tube Suzani

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    • Lot113
    • OriginCentral Asia, North East Uzbekistan
    • Dimensions242 x 202 cm
    • Age18th century
    • Estimate EUR18,000 - 23,000
    VOK Collection, Suzani 2, 66

    This very old suzani from Ura Tube, a city situated at the entrance of the Ferghana Valley, exhibits a stunning profusion of motifs. The three wide design panels of the field and the extra-wide border display the same design vocabulary without any differences in scale. Unusually, there is no clear separation between the two sections in this item, and at first glance the two areas seem to merge. Although the design initially appears confusingly chaotic, the structure of a well-thought-out, highly compressed composition, strikingly rich in relationships, emerges on closer inspection. This degree of creative freedom is rarely encountered in suzanis. All the designs are finely embroidered in the yurma chain stitch technique and very delicately drawn. Due to constraints of space, we are unable to discuss their diversity in this publication. Small apotropaic symbols intended to protect the owner of this embroidery have been incorporated into the design everywhere. The fact that the motifs embroidered in black have almost disappeared due to corrosion suggests an early date. The suzani was published by Bausback as early as 1977, but the illustration was reversed left to right in his catalogue at the time. – Obvious signs of age and wear, the foundation is damaged in places. Mounted onto canvas.

    Published:
    BAUSBACK, PETER, Antike orientalische Knüpfkunst. Mannheim 1977, pl. p. 206 *** VOK, IGNAZIO, Vok Collection. Suzani 2. A Textile Art from Central Asia. (Text by Jakob Taube) Munich 2006, no. 66

  • Bijar Kilim

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    • Lot114
    • OriginNorth West Persia, Kurdistan
    • Dimensions173 x 120 cm
    • Age2nd half 19th century
    • Estimate EUR3,000 - 3,700
    VOK Collection, Caucasus – Persia 65

    This small-format, coarsely woven Kurdish kilim originates from a village in the Bijar region. A large undecorated shield form stands alone at the centre of the poppy-red field. Each of its two steep stepped arches is crowned with a diamond. Due to heavy patination and abrash development, the surface of the double niche central medallion in changing shades of green and blue appears transparent, like a window that opens a view to an elusive world. The window effect is enhanced by a triple stepped outline in red, brown and yellow. Small stepped polygons are aligned in a row in the narrow border. Two further examples of this rare type, which dispenses with any kind of additional ornamentation, have been published in literature. – Signs of age and wear, thin spots at the centre of the field, several stains; the upper and lower finishes have been partially rewoven.

    Literature:
    GALERIE NEIRIZ (publ.), Kelims der Nomaden und Bauern Persiens. Berlin 1990, ill. 17 *** POHL-SCHILLINGS, HANS, Persische Flachgewebe. Bilder aus Iran. Cologne 1994, no. 2

    Published:
    VOK, IGNAZIO, Vok Collection. Caucasus-Persia. Gilim and other Flatweaves. (Text by Hamid Sadighi) Munich 1996, no. 65

  • Bokhara-Kermina Suzani

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    • Lot115
    • OriginCentral Asia, South West Uzbekistan
    • Dimensions242 x 180 cm
    • Age1st half 19th century
    • Estimate EUR24,000 - 28,000
    VOK Collection, Suzani 1, 9

    It is difficult to decide whether this suzani, very finely embroidered in the yurma chain stitch technique throughout, was made in Bokhara or the town of Kermina situated further to the north east. The two centres share many common features in terms of composition, ornamentation, embroidery techniques and colour schemes. In this item, the ochre foundation consisting of a very fine machine-woven cotton is striking; it was probably imported from India. Green twigs decorated with spiky leaves cover the field in diagonal and intersecting lines, combining into a close-meshed diamond lattice filled with a very rich variety of blossoms in diverse shapes, sizes and colours. Large circular blossoms, each surrounded by a wreath of light blue leaves, have been incorporated into a sweeping green wavy vine in the wide main border. Embroidered in opposite directions, the stitches employed in all the larger designs create a lively and three-dimensional effect. In sunlight, the colours gleam and sparkle light bright jewels on the dark ground of the field. A precious suzani of magical beauty. – Very well preserved. Mounted onto canvas.

    Published:
    VOK, IGNAZIO, Vok Collection. Suzani. A Textile Art from Central Asia. (Text by Jakob Taube) Munich 1994, no. 9

  • Luri Kilim

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    • Lot116
    • OriginNorth Persia, Varamin region
    • Dimensions309 x 178 cm
    • Age1st half 19th century
    • Estimate EUR5,000 - 6,000
    VOK Collection, Caucasus – Persia 51

    In 1789 Tehran became the seat of government of the Qajar dynasty, then recently come into power. Shortly afterwards a number of nomadic tribes settled around Varamin, a city situated some 40 kilometres to the south east and thus in the vicinity of Tehran. The khans of the leading tribes wished to be close to the country’s new centre of political power; for their protection, they brought with them their own household guards whose military camps later developed into permanent settlements. The tribes intermarried, and the identity of the individual groups was lost over time. Today the inhabitants of the region simply describe themselves as "Varamini". In historical terms, it is thus difficult to definitely attribute Varamin weavings to a particular ethnic group. – Woven in a single panel, this large kilim is described by Sadighi as the oldest surviving example from Varamin. It may be the work of a Luri weaver. This is suggested by the dark brown warp, the muted palette of reds, browns, ochres and sandy yellows as well as the stunning effect of the somewhat irregular design. Diagonal rows of sharply serrated devices combine to form concentric diamonds composed of colour diagonals which increase in size as they approach the sides. The focal point of the composition is not the exact centre of the field, but has shifted to the upper section. The white serrated devices provide structure in an inherently confusing design, dictating how it is read. In concept the kilim is reminiscent of Anatolian weavings. There are no lateral borders, and the ends of the field are accentuated by two wide elems of horizontal stripes decorated with serrated devices and motifs composed of triangles. The technique used in this item is single weft interlocking. The small white flowers seen in the elems are a characteristic feature of all Varamin flatweaves. – Signs of age and wear, damaged sides.

    Literature:
    GALERIE NEIRIZ (publ.), Kelims der Nomaden und Bauern Persiens. Berlin 1990, ill. 17 *** POHL-SCHILLINGS, HANS, Persische Flachgewebe. Bilder aus Iran. Cologne 1994, no. 2

    Published:
    VOK, IGNAZIO, Vok Collection. Caucasus-Persia. Gilim and other Flatweaves. (Text by Hamid Sadighi) Munich 1996, no. 65

  • Shahsavan Kilim

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    • Lot117
    • OriginNorth West Persia, Azerbaijan
    • Dimensions415 x 168 cm
    • Agemid 19th century
    • Estimate EUR3,000 - 4,000
    VOK Collection, Caucasus – Persia 58

    This very large and heavy Shahsavan kilim woven on a cotton warp is a village rug. Directly comparable pieces have not been published. Five nested stepped diamonds aligned along the central axis of the red-brown field are linked by a blue pole to form one a large design, with wide comb motifs reminiscent of Anatolian parmakli designs placed in the intervening spaces. Sadighi gives the Hashtrud region as the provenance, but does not specify the reasons for his attribution. We believe that the kilim was woven in the surroundings of Bijar. This is suggested by the style of the colourful diagonal stripe design seen in the main border and that of the wide outer border of reciprocal trefoils. – Obvious signs of age and wear. Several missing sections in the field, damaged sides. Mounted onto canvas.

    Published:
    VOK, IGNAZIO, Vok Collection. Caucasus-Persia. Gilim and other Flatweaves. (Text by Hamid Sadighi) Munich 1996, no. 58 *** SADIGHI NEIRIZ, HAMID & HAWKES, KARIN, Kelims und andere Flachgewebe aus der Sammlung Neiriz. Calbe, undated (2014), no. 54

  • Bijar Kilim

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    • Lot118
    • OriginNorth West Persia, Kurdistan
    • Dimensions556 x 167 cm
    • Age1st quarter 20th century
    • Estimate EUR6,000 - 8,000
    VOK Collection, Caucasus – Persia 52

    This very large, all wool slit tapestry was woven in one of the Kurdish villages in the Bijar region. Produced in the kelleh format, it was placed on the floor in the main room of a traditional Persian house. The wool, the light and warm colours, some of them in mottled design, the specific weaving technique and the type of end finish are typical features of Bijar kilims, but the rare design is not. The abstract kaleidoscopic mosaic design consists of small diamonds in fourteen different shades arranged in offset rows without any immediate diagonal colour relationships. The flattening seen at the vertical points of the diamonds results in curved offset lines rather than straight diagonals. There was no need for the weaver to add any further decorative devices. Another example of this rare kilim group was sold by us in 2005. – The impressively “modern” effect is based entirely on the interplay of colour and form. Comparisons with contemporary European art spring to mind, such as Gerhard Richter’s Colour Field Paintings. A particularly inspired example is his glass window in Cologne Cathedral. – Original finishes all around, very good condition.

    Literature:
    RIPPON BOSWELL, auction A 66, 19th November 2005, # 20

    Published:
    VOK, IGNAZIO, Vok Collection. Caucasus-Persia. Gilim and other Flatweaves. (Text by Hamid Sadighi) Munich 1996, no. 52 *** TANAVOLI, PARVIZ, Persian Flatweaves. Woodbridge 2002, pl. 55