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VOK COLLECTION, Selection II

Saturday 12. March 2016 at 3 p.m.

88 Lots
  • Qashqa’i Kilim

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    • Lot149
    • OriginSouth West Persia, Fars province
    • Dimensions242 x 150 cm
    • Agemid 19th century
    • Estimate EUR4,000 - 5,000
    VOK Collection, Caucasus – Persia 99

    Previously published on several occasions, this Qashqa’i kilim is considered a masterpiece of Persian nomad art. According to Sadighi, it was woven by a member of the Darreh Shuri tribe ca. 1850. The perfectly balanced design of 24 squares arranged in horizontal rows of four is so spaciously conceived that the undecorated areas of the white ground assume the function of a wide grid. While the squares contain undecorated sections of plain colour, the bands making up the grid are decorated with rows of small stepped polygons that combine to form intersecting design chains. The resulting interplay of contrasting colours creates a special tension. Identical stepped polygons adorn the red-ground border surrounding the field. Due to the weaving method employed, the vertical sides of the square compartments are outlined in fine serrations resembling saw teeth; the inner sides are contoured in stepped triangles, resulting in a serrated shape. The distribution of colours creates diagonal design bands running from the bottom left to the top right. The white sections seen in the outer trefoil border are woven in cotton. – The fine weave, excellent quality of the colours and balanced composition allow us to assume an early date around the mid 19th century. Although the chequerboard design is part of the standard Qashqa’i repertoire, it is rarely encountered in this degree of perfection and harmony. – Slight signs of age and wear, good overall condition. Mounted onto canvas.

    Literature:
    GALERIE NEIRIZ (publ.), Kelims der Nomaden und Bauern Persiens. Berlin 1990, ill. 46 *** TANAVOLI, PARVIZ, Persian Flatweaves. Woodbridge 2002, pl. 135 *** SADIGHI NEIRIZ, HAMID & HAWKES, KARIN, Kelims und andere Flachgewebe aus der Sammlung Neiriz. Calbe, undated (2014), no. 95

    Published:
    HALI 35, London 1987, p. 102 (Gary Muse advertisement) *** HERRMANN, EBERHART, Seltene Orientteppiche IX. Munich 1987, no. 71 *** VOK, IGNAZIO, Vok Collection. Caucasus-Persia. Gilim and other Flatweaves. (Text by Hamid Sadighi) Munich 1996, no. 99

  • Bokhara Suzani

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    • Lot150
    • OriginCentral Asia, South West Uzbekistan
    • Dimensions238 x 170 cm
    • Age1st half 19th century
    • Estimate EUR18,000 - 22,000
    VOK Collection, Suzani 1, 20

    In this beautiful Bokhara suzani, five delicately drawn flowering trees, each in a different design, take the place of the central star motif seen in comparable examples. Four very large flowering trees emanating from vases grow diagonally towards the corners of the field. They are related diagonally in ornamentation and colour, providing a strong framework for the composition as a whole. Fourteen small birds and two water jugs are informally scattered across the field. The border design of circular and star-shaped blossoms surrounded by a vine of long curved leaves is characteristic of Bokhara, as are the golden spirals encountered everywhere in the design. The relationship of the field and border is very balanced, which is frequently not the case in Bokhara embroideries. Suzanis presenting this field design were always attributed to Nurata in the past, but this notion has now been superseded. It is important to pay attention to details, in particular the colours which are bright and very glossy in this suzani embroidered in basma filling stitch and ilmoq outlines. Most of the blossoms are composed of orange and pink segments, with details picked out in gold and blue (such as the irises); combined with the fresh green of the leaves, the result is an enchanting play of colours creating an effect of serene lightness. – Good condition, mounted onto canvas.

    Literature:
    HASSON, RACHEL, Flowering Gardens Along the Silk Road. Embroidered Textiles from Uzbekistan. Jerusalem 2001, pl. p. 40

    Published:
    VOK, IGNAZIO, Vok Collection. Suzani. A Textile Art from Central Asia. (Text by Jakob Taube) Munich 1994, no. 20

  • Karshi Suzani

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    • Lot151
    • OriginCentral Asia, South West Uzbekistan
    • Dimensions228 x 180 cm
    • Age1st half 19th century
    • Estimate EUR30,000 - 35,000
    VOK Collection, Suzani 1, 12

    Situated along the silk road leading from China to Persia and an important stage on the route from Russia to India, Karshi held an important art historical and strategic position during the 19th century. Formerly part of the Emirate of Bokhara, the city is located in southern Uzbekistan, some 160 kilometres south east of Bokhara and 100 kilometres west of Shakhrisyabz. Although the embroideries produced there display influences from both of the above-mentioned embroidery centres, they do have a style of their own. Typical features are the double outlines of two circular vines surrounding the larger blossoms as well as the bright and radiant palette of brilliant reds and fresh greens. – In the field of this magnificent embroidery executed in basma filling stitch, with ilmoq and ladder stitch outlines, slightly curved green twigs combine into a spacious diamond lattice enclosing five large red circular blossoms and three diamonds surrounded by smaller red blossoms. The design principle of the double surrounds can be clearly discerned in the fourteen large circular blossoms adorning the wide main border. They imbue this suzani with a narrative character. An elephant and a tiger are placed at opposite ends of the field, and two large, realistically portrayed humans in oriental dress are seen at the right and left sides of the field in a diagonal relationship; depicted as a man and woman, they obviously represent the bridal couple. The wide variety of small additional motifs, such as birds and three goats, water jugs and graceful botehs is only perceived upon closer inspection. There is historic evidence to prove that Indian merchants and bankers ran their businesses in the oasis towns of the old Emirate of Bokhara. The elephant and tiger – animals that never occur in suzanis otherwise – may indicate that this item was commissioned by an Indian client. A parallel example (showing two elephants, two tigers and three kneeling humans) is in the collection of the Victoria and Albert Museum, London. – Minimal signs of wear and several holes in the foundation, very good overall condition. Mounted onto canvas.

    Literature:
    GEWERBEMUSEUM BASEL (publ.), Textilkunst der Steppen- und Bergvölker Zentralasiens. Basel 1974, back cover *** SOTHEBY'S New York, auction of 11th December 1991, # 71 *** HERRMANN, EBERHART, Seltene Orientteppiche IX. Munich 1987, no. 93 *** FLING, RUSSELL S., Khans, Nomads & Needlework. Suzanis and Embroideries of Central Asia. Columbus, Ohio 2012, no. 25

    Published:
    VOK, IGNAZIO, Vok Collection. Suzani. A Textile Art from Central Asia. (Text by Jakob Taube) Munich 1994, no. 12

  • Shakhrisyabz Suzani

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    • Lot152
    • OriginCentral Asia, South West Uzbekistan
    • Dimensions235 x 175 cm
    • Ageearly 19th century
    • Estimate EUR35,000 - 40,000
    VOK Collection, Suzani 1, 28

    This very rare suzani was made in Shakhrisyabz, the "green city". The embroidery technique (kanda khayol filling stitches, yurma and ilmoq contour stitches), the glowing colours and the overall expression leave no doubt about this. The idiosyncratic, even eccentric composition and the significant irregularities seen in the design and its execution are very different from the professionalism displayed in most Shakhrisyabz pieces, which are usually planned with precision and executed to perfection; many of them are probably workshop pieces. This item is based on an individual concept, an alternative design of expressive and powerful appearance, which is unlike the prevailing local design tradition. The asymmetric composition without a central design and the flamboyant style of drawing immediately catch the eye. Four huge, sprawling primary designs occupy the whole of the field. More usually encountered as a border design and dramatically enlarged in this item, the motif consists of a central circular blossom with four diagonal arms composed of petrol leaves. The latter enclose red fan-shaped blossoms attached to long stalks. Varying numbers of smaller blossoms and leaves, each in a different design, are grouped around the central circular blossoms. Slender panicles decorated with colourful flowers and leaves have been placed in the free spaces to further enliven the composition. The distinctly different sizes of the primary motifs and their idiosyncratic design, with shapes portrayed in dynamic movement, create an impression of a garden growing wild. The wide main border of ten large circular blossoms and various smaller blossoms shown in side view, surrounded by an elongated vine, displays the same spontaneity as the field design. Only two further suzanis from fffrfromfromthis distinctive group are known. One example is now in the de Young Memorial Museum in San Francisco (inv. no. L.84.166.5), and the other was sold by us in 1999 (now in a German private collection). – Slight signs of age and wear. The reverse is backed with canvas, the edges are backed with an antique ikat fabric.

    Literature:
    COOTNER, CATHRYN M., Gardens of Paradise. In: HALI 30, London 1986, p. 50, ill. 6 *** RIPPON BOSWELL, auction of 20th November 1999, # 114

    Published:
    VOK, IGNAZIO, Vok Collection. Suzani. A Textile Art from Central Asia. (Text by Jakob Taube) Munich 1994, no. 28

  • Azeri Cover

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    • Lot153
    • OriginSouth Caucasus, Azerbaijan
    • Dimensions294 x 191 cm
    • Agelate 19th century
    • Estimate EUR3,000 - 3,700
    VOK Collection, Caucasus – Persia 44

    This large single-panel kilim was woven either in the Kazak area or in the neighbouring Karabagh region. It is a work by the Azeri group which makes up the majority of the local population. Two flaming red and one dark green vertical bars with deeply incised serrated outlines have been placed on the deep blue ground of the field. They constitute a coherent rhythmic entity within the wide frame created by the blue ground of the field. Two fine red lines provide the upper and lower finishes. In his discussion of the kilim, the collector associates the design with three pillars that appear to float on the blue ground. It is amazing how superbly the weaver managed to combinevery simple yet formally outstanding means and just three bold colours to create a textile picture of this expressive power. Bold abstract compositions of this kind appear to have been a speciality of the Azeri. – Very good condition.

    Literature:
    HERRMANN, EBERHART, Asiatische Teppich- und Textilkunst 3. Munich 1991, no. 35 *** RIPPON BOSWELL, A 76, 4th December 2010, # 256

    Published:
    VOK, IGNAZIO, Vok Collection. Caucasus-Persia. Gilim and other Flatweaves. (Text by Hamid Sadighi) Munich 1996, no. 44

  • Bakhtiari Kilim

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    • Lot154
    • OriginWestern Central Persia, Chahar Mahal region
    • Dimensions260 x 119 cm
    • Age1st quarter 20th century
    • Estimate EUR3,500 - 4,500
    VOK Collection, Caucasus – Persia 47

    Woven in the double weft interlocking technique to avoid slits, this rather coarse kilim is a product of one of the Bakhtiari tribal groups in the Chahar Mahal region. Destined for home use, it is solid in structure to suit its purpose. The abstract design of vertical serrated bands – irregular in shape and slightly curved – appears dynamic and full of energy. The visual effect of this kilim is thus particularly expressive. Three white bands woven in cotton add structure and create a sense of calm in the seemingly chaotic and aggressive design. Blue serrated bands constitute the lateral borders. The end finishes consist of narrow horizontal stripes, some of them with small brocaded motifs. – Good condition, only slight signs of age.

    Published:
    AMPE, PATRICK & RIE, Textile Art. A personal choice (Kailash Gallery). Antwerp 1994, no. 24 *** VOK, IGNAZIO, Vok Collection. Caucasus-Persia. Gilim and other Flatweaves. (Text by Hamid Sadighi) Munich 1996, no. 47

  • Avunya Kilim

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    • Lot155
    • OriginNorth West Anatolia
    • Dimensions249 x 126 cm
    • Age2nd half 19th century
    • Estimate EUR2,200 - 2,800
    VOK Collection, Anatolia 42

    According to Hirsch, this kilim was woven in the Yerli village of Avunya located in north western Turkey between Canakkale and Balikesir. Kilims are still woven in the village today, although they now show designs that appear rigid and mechanical compared to this rare antique Vok example. – The design of the white-ground field consists of five rectangles of varying sizes separated by wide horizontal bands. The composition is dominated by a large square placed at the centre of the field. It is almost completely filled by a red-ground diamond decorated with small cruciform devices, arranged concentrically to echo the diamond shape. The same design – concentric diamonds composed of cruciform devices – continues outside the central motif in waves, filling the ground. The two horizontal rectangular compartments above and below, only half the size of the central square, present analogous designs in which the red diamond appears as a halved form. Two narrow horizontal panels, each with a comb motif at its centre, constitute the end finishes. The minimalist and abstract style of the designs, the restrained palette and wide lateral borders of parmakli devices are characteristic features of this kilim group. Several of the pink dividing stripes and details in the cruciform motifs are woven in silk yarn. – Damage to the sides and small holes all around. Signs of age and wear. Mounted onto canvas.

    Literature:
    HULL, ALASTAIR & LUCZYC-WYHOWSKA, JOSE, Kilim. The Complete Guide. London 1993, no. 261

    Published:
    VOK, IGNAZIO, Vok Collection. Anatolia. Kilims and other Flatweaves from Anatolia. (Text by Udo Hirsch) Munich 1997, no. 42

  • Haymana Kilim

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    • Lot156
    • OriginCentral Anatolia
    • Dimensions280 x 125 cm
    • Age18th century
    • Estimate EUR3,000 - 3,600
    VOK Collection, Anatolia 50

    According to Hirsch, this medium-sized, single-panel borderless kilim was woven in a village in the surroundings of Haymana, a town situated ca. 70 kilometres south of Ankara. A striking solitary design – a large brown diamond with deeply incised lateral “parmakli” outlines enclosing two nested feathered diamonds in red and dark blue – lies at the centre of an empty white field. The diamond is one of the oldest symbols known to mankind. It was the most important fertility symbol among the early cultures of Near East. The sides of the field are decorated with pointed triangles in diverse colours. This serrated band carries further symbolic meaning, constituting a barrier against external dangers to close off the kilim’s interior and define it as a protected area. The points have been inserted into a red band at both ends. - Herrmann, who first published the kilim in 1990, points out in his discussion that the composition of a central motif placed on a plain undecorated field is highly atypical of Anatolian kilims. Although comparable design concepts are encountered in Qashqa’i kilims from Fars and Shahsavan weavings from Azerbaijan, they do not occur in Anatolia. This example is thus particularly rare. Hirsch believes that the kilim was used as an eating cloth (sofreh) on festive occasions. – Slight signs of age and wear, several stains. Both ends somewhat damaged, original side finishes. Backed with canvas along the sides all around.

    Published:
    HERRMANN, EBERHART, Asiatische Teppich- und Textilkunst 2. Munich 1990, no. 18 *** VOK, IGNAZIO, Vok Collection. Anatolia. Kilims and other Flatweaves from Anatolia. (Text by Udo Hirsch) Munich 1997, no. 50

  • Samarkand Suzani

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    • Lot157
    • OriginCentral Asia, South West Uzbekistan
    • Dimensions243 x 222 cm
    • Ageearly 19th century
    • Estimate EUR22,000 - 26,000
    VOK Collection, Suzani 1, 41

    Published by Black & Loveless as early as 1981, this suzani is considered one of the most beautiful and earliest examples from Samarkand by connoisseurs. The suzani is composed of six panels and embroidered in the basma filling stitch with yurma outlines. The outer panels of the foundation are considerably wider than the inner ones in a conscious effort to avoid misalignment in the design of the lateral main borders. The large scale of the motifs and the spacious composition are typical features of the local style, as are the large undecorated sections of the ground and the palette, in this case sixteen diverse and intense, luminous shades including golden yellow, pink, orange, aubergine as well as several blues and greens. The comparatively small field is surrounded by a very wide main border in which eight huge circular blossoms are flanked by wide sweeping sickle leaves. In the field, a central circular blossom is encircled by a two-tone vine decorated with leaves, and four palmettes are aligned diagonally towards the corners. This "four and one" design is known as "chahar cheragh" (four-armed candle holder) in Uzbekistan and considered a powerful protective symbol. It is frequently encountered in Shakhrisyabz suzanis. Six small circular blossoms, each composed of six radial colour segments, complete the design. Samarkand embroideries are easily identified by the distinctive style of their secondary borders – an elongated wavy vine surrounding the field, with fan-shaped blossoms attached to it in an in-and-out rhythm. Minor details are embroidered in vermilion wool. The design of the border overlaps the red boundary lines in several places, a feature indicating creative freedom which is only seen in very old Samarkand suzanis. – Slight signs of age and wear, good overall condition. Backed with canvas.

    Published:
    BLACK, DAVID & LOVELESS, CLIVE, Embroidered Flowers From Thrace To Tartary. London 1981, no. 25 *** VOK, IGNAZIO, Vok Collection. Suzani. A Textile Art from Central Asia. (Text by Jakob Taube) Munich 1994, no. 41

  • "Karabag" Suzani

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    • Lot158
    • OriginCentral Asia, South West Uzbekistan
    • Dimensions242 x 180 cm
    • Age1st half 19th century
    • Estimate EUR30,000 - 35,000
    VOK Collection, Suzani 2, 63

    A huge circular blossom constitutes the unmistakable centre of the composition. It encloses a smaller blossom with nine tapered, knife-shaped blue botehs radially arranged around it. Six large blossoms with scalloped outlines orbit the central motif like satellites. A second design element of smaller blossoms densely covers the ground. The coherent character of the composition derives from the bold green leaf vines weaving through or winding around all the designs. The overall impression is one of abundantly growing plants. The main border displays the same designs as the field, while the two minor borders contain different vines decorated with leaves and blossoms. Various design sections are embroidered in red wool yarn. According to recent insights, this precious material was imported from India. – The most striking feature of this six-panel suzani embroidered in the chain stitch technique is the small black spherical fruit immediately surrounding all the larger blossoms like design chains. The shape of the motifs is reminiscent of grapes, which is why these unmistakable suzanis are known as "the black dot group" among English-speaking connoisseurs. Very few examples have come to light so far. The suzani sold as lot 65 in the Vok I sale is one, and further examples are listed below. A remarkable fact is that all the known examples differ in composition. Their common features are the black spheres and a specific colour scheme including a higher proportion of green than is usual in suzanis. Lot 65 was described by us as a Karabag suzani. We probably ventured too far in pin-pointing the provenance so precisely and are now using quotation marks, but we do wish to keep the term as a working name. Experts agree that these suzanis were made in the region between Bokhara, Karshi and Shakhrisyabz. – Several small holes, good overall condition. Backed with canvas.

    Literature:
    TSCHEPELEWEZKAJA, G.L. & SUCHAREWA, O.A., Susani Usbekistans. Hamburg 1991, no. 13, p. 103 *** SOTHEBY's New York, auction of 11th December 1991, # 75 *** VOK, IGNAZIO, Vok Collection. Suzani. A Textile Art from Central Asia. (Text by Jakob Taube) Munich 1994, no. 16 *** HALI 111, London 2000. P. 95 (Loveless advertisement) *** GRUBE, ERNST J., Keshte. Central Asian Embroideries. The Marshall and Marilyn R. Wolf Collection. New York 2003, no. 5

    Published:
    VOK, IGNAZIO, Vok Collection. Suzani 2. A Textile Art from Central Asia. (Text by Jakob Taube) Munich 2006, no. 63