Yomut Chuval, Turkmenistan (Central Asia), 19th century, 3’5” x 2’4”

The art of the Turkmen as seen in these larger bags (chuvals), is seemingly repetitious and ultimately boring.  The aesthetic is a subtle one, with a sense of three dimension art rather than a more oft encountered flat and lifeless composition.

The sense of dimensionality is achieved through simple adjustment of knots, with smaller ‘gols’ or medallions appearing to recede in space, away from the viewer.  The borders are used as a window or frame through which one looks into the weaving.

The primary ‘gols’ are drawn with an interesting twist, ie. there I sa brak in the outlining of the medallion.  Given the fact these medallions are regarded as one would view a mandala, the break in this outlining is curious and some have been known to believe it is a feature of ‘age’.

The secondary medallions are extremely unusual , with lovely coloring and  possibly indicating a specific sub group of the Yomut.  They are rarely found in these weavings and must be regarded as ‘rare’.

The condition is ok, overall even wear, no repairs or re-weaves and all the colors are derived from natural dyes.




For further information on this piece, you may contact Thomas Cole