24th October ’17: What rugs tell us

A few weeks back I wrote about how it’s human nature to find faces in inanimate patterns. I’m sitting here staring at an Afghan rug at at my dad’s house and I’ve spotted a cricket dressed in coat and tails, sitting on an old office stool, almost certainly typing 🤔 (swipe for pic) Ancient carpets are often full of symbolism (way more symbolic than a typing cricket), such as sky doors leading to Heaven in Persian rugs (or a comb as a reminder to be clean) or the pallay symbols used in Quechuan rugs to depict Andean folklore characters or major historical events. And yet if you don’t know what you’re looking for you won’t necessarily see these. I love the idea of colour and pattern being used to convey stories, parables and moral guidance – humour, even – through the medium of a rug or carpet. By the way, did you know that the term ‘carpet’ derives from the Latin carpere, ‘to pluck,’ probably because carpets were made from unravelled ‘plucked’ fabric, and that it has the same Latin root as carpe diem, literally ‘pluck/seize the day.’

Martha, The Colour File x 

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©Martha Roberts

 

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The typewriting cricket ©Martha Roberts
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