Home > Rug, Kelim, Soumak, Textile Post Archive >the Name of the Game
Mon, Jun 1st, 2015 01:09:25 PM
Topic: the Name of the Game

Exceptional early non-classical weavings are rare, they always were and they always will be.

But prior to 1990 anyone with enough time, or money, preferrably both and KNOWLEDGE could assemble a superior collection.

Today even if you have all three this is virtually impossible for several reasons. The main ones are:

great competition for them from other collectors, dealers and auctioneers

increased knowledge due to the publishing boom from 1975-today that has made many who formerly did not know about these hard to learn about weavings smart enough to know one when they see it(or think they do but this is another story)

diminishing supply because most of the old homes in Europe and America where such weavings were sleeping un- and under-appreciated on floors, in trunks, in basement and attics have been sold along with those rugs and carpets

diminished supply from Turkey where formerly many early pieces made their way from the provinces into Istanbul, stolen or not, and then were gobbled up first by western dealers beginning in the 1980's and then by active collectors a few years later

diminished supply from countries in western central asia which formerly made their way into Istanbul and the international marketplace

For a collector today to enlarge an already existing collection, or start one, there is little hope for success.

There are far fewer dealers today than before and far more clients for the remaining ones to sell to.

So that leaves a pretty desolate path for anyone to walk down and try to pick up masterpiece weavings.

RK saw this trend forming in the mid-1990's and since then each year not only do we find fewer and fewer pieces to interest us but we spend less and less time trying to find them.

Some might argue the ever proliferation of rug auctions and rug shows havemade it possible to score pieces but RK knows this is totally a fallacy as we see everything that comes to the public marketplace and rarely if ever find something we are interested in.

And while the internet has changed things it has not changed the dwindling supply and has in fact increased competition for it.

Granted our orientation is extremely discerning but this has not changed over the past 30 years, during which time we were able to find each year enough to make us satisfied.

We are not dismayed by this situation, as we already have a goodly number. However, the desire for more is always present and we have not given up looking, we just do it less and less.

What's the moral of this story?

There really is none other than the truth: It is impossible to create a collection of early non-classical rugs today, and chances of finding pieces to add to an existing collection are bleak, and get bleaker each passing year.

Maybe we all should start collecting stamps, as we have heard nobody is interested anymore in these bygone relics of snailmail in the interenet age?

Author: jc
Mon, Jun 1st, 2015 01:09:25 PM

Soon after posting the above we received an email accusing us of being "anti-rug dealer" "negative" and "completely wrong".

We are none of the above.

RK calls it as we see it, and although our comments are very seldom rosey, happy face, ain't it all great we defy anyone to prove what we write is 'completely wrong'.

Look, we did not say it is impossible to find exceptional early examples of non-classical weavings, we just said it has been hard to do so over the past decade or so and it is getting harder each year.

If you doubt this, go prove it and show us instead of talking shit.

Talk is cheap, and internet blah blah ever cheaper.

And attempting to direct a pointed finger at RK for being 'anti-dealer' is just as nonsensical.

We know it is tough and rug dealing is not the slam-dunk it used to be.

But our comments concerning the complacent, silence of the lambs approach most dealers take to the rampant and ongoing problems in rugDUMB are fact, and their attitude has not made the situation better and only made it worse.

Plus to think our call for action is 'anti-dealer' makes us wonder how anyone with an IQ over 65 could honestly come to that conclusion.

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