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Carpet with Hexagonal Compartments

Artist Culture
Ottoman period, 1281–1924
early 19th century
Made in
Anatolia, Turkey, Asia
Coverings & hangings, textiles
Current Location
Not on view
71 1/4 x 49 3/4 in. (181 x 126.4 cm)
Credit Line
Gift of James F. Ballard
Public Domain
Object Number
The incredibly thick and lustrous wool pile of this rug is typical of Yürük products. Yürük, the Turkish word for "wanderer," has been used to identify the nomadic people of Anatolia (modern-day Turkey). Yürük rugs made from local wools are very lightweight for their size. Given the sheen and difference in color saturation when viewed from opposite ends, this rug almost appears to be silk. The design is reminiscent of octagonal ceramic tiles, with interlocking octagonal medallions separated by a twisted-ribbon band in light blue. Connected to this band are rectangular boxes containing smaller hexagonal compartments filled with highly stylized insect forms that may have developed from a floral motif of projecting leaves. Geometric shapes, some with legs, and amulet shapes fill the larger octagonal spaces between the boxes.
by 1916 - 1929
James F. Ballard [James Franklin Ballard (1851–1931)], St. Louis, MO and New York, NY [1]

1929 -
Saint Louis Art Museum, given by James F. Ballard [2]

[1] This object is published in Marshall Field and Company, Rare Examples in Antique Oriental Weavings from Persia, the Caucasus, and the Levant: Selected from the Collection of James F. Ballard, Saint Louis, U.S.A.: Home Furnishing Exhibit, Marshall Field and Company, Chicago, Monday, September 25th to October 7th, 1916 (Chicago: Marshall Field and Company, 1916), cat. no. 6; and in John Herron Art Institute, Catalogue of Oriental Rugs in the Collection of James F. Ballard (Indianapolis: John Herron Art Institute, 1924), p. 85 and p. 87, cat. no. 45 (catalogue entry), and p. 86, cat. no. 45 (halftone illustration).

[2] This object is also published in Maurice S. Dimand, The Ballard Collection of Oriental Rugs in the City Art Museum of St. Louis (St. Louis: N. p., 1935), pl. XLIV (halftone illustration). In the catalogue's foreword (dated June 1930), the donor, James F. Ballard, states that he gave 69 objects to the Museum in May 1929. The Deed of Gift of the James F. Ballard Collection is dated May 2, 1929. Minutes of the Administrative Board of the City Art Museum, April 22, May 7, and December 6, 1929.
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