CARPET/GATE 2018-06-09T13:06:16+00:00

Ellen Wiener - Carpet/Gate

A friend explained that his rolled prayer rug was a portable private paradise- available even in the most chaotic urban atmosphere.  That this movable device altered the nature of thought and time for him was plain.

Carpets are often linked with motion. As some of the most highly prized trade goods ever, the exportation of rugs carved literal roads while blurring intellectual and commercial borders over hundreds of years. Multiple uses in architectural structures, as producers of vital village income, and as annotators of  key texts provide an extended context for translating traditions into contemporary practice.

Representations of Islamic carpets began appearing in Europe as early as the 14th century and their influence affected elements of space and perspective in Western painting thereafter. The two-dimensional stacks of arches, water, lamps and gardens so often stylized in prayer rugs do seem to echo Eden and are often framed by gravity defying borders. Built from complex knotted matrices, the tessellating geometries appear to almost dissolve when seen up close from a kneeling position. Regaining a standing posture snaps the mundane world back into visual clarity; voyage taken, traveller refreshed.