Known for their durability, functionality, and irresistible designs, this week’s Antique Spotlight features a Bidjar carpet from the Kurdistan region of Iran. Continue reading to discover what makes Bidjar carpets so irresistible and what makes this example so unique!
Located in modern northwestern Iran, Bidjar carpets claimed their name from they were created by, Bidjar Iran. Like other Persian carpets, Bidjar designs usually showcase a traditional Persian flower garden design. Bidjar pieces typically utilize a central medallion, detailed by flowers, birds, or caterpillars, and with arrowed or stylized ends on the central motif. Traditionally, Bidjar carpets have bright and robust tones compared to other traditional Persian rugs, which makes the vividness of their colors a common identifying characteristic of Bidjar carpets for experts. What separates Bidjar carpets from other Persian pieces is the use of two levels of warp threads when hand-knotting the rug. The varying threads create a dense and luxurious pile, suitable for endless use and generations of beauty.
Our example Bidjar carpet measures 3’8” x 5’6” and remains a gem in the Orley Shabahang Antique Collection. We find this semi-antique Bidjar so exquisite due to its formal and refined flower garden design. The ornate medallion incorporates intricate flower and vine motifs, detailed in cream, red, pink, brown, and green wool. The medallion is within the center of the carpet and has fabulous contrast, creating almost a kaleidoscope-styled design. Within the central medallion, blue, orange, and cream vases detail the field. However, the features and symbolism that make this piece extraordinary must be identified by a trained eye.
Hidden everywhere in the design, bits of creative craftsmanship can be found within the pile. Traditionally, the foreground of this carpet would be blue, representing the water pond, or hoz, inside the Persian flower garden. In this carpet, the weaver chose to utilize red, which in Persian textiles represents love. In the four corners of the field, fish in cream and green cleverly disguise themselves as longleaf designs. Fish, in Persian rugs, symbolize life and water and the transcendence between life in different landscapes. The green fern shapes on either side of the medallion are peacocks with their tails aligned symmetrically to blend into the garden design. These peacocks symbolize divine protection and add tranquility to the carpet’s design. Incorporating these motifs within the additional design elements serves to replicate the attempts of animals to camouflage themselves into their surroundings.
As this carpet measures just under 4′ x 6′, this refined and functional semi-antique Bidjar would be an ideal fit as a living room carpet, bedroom carpet, or wherever a small area carpet is needed. And if antique pieces are on your mind, check out the Orley Shabahang Antique collection on our website, or stop by our 1stDibs Digital Showroom to see our newest arrivals!