an exploration of the vintage inspirations of Zeki Muren, a turkish pop icon known for his exuberant nature and eclectic contributions to the art world. retro compositions and high impact color are balanced with nostalgic colorways in a distressed wool quality.
deco-era word meaning paradise. the elysian series is defined by elongated geometry and modernist abstractions inspired by the ornate shapes created during the 1920s. intricate patterns, sumptuous materials, and rich hues combine creating elegant space defining compositions.
the elysian series was influenced by sonia delauney’s innovative use of abstract shape and revolutionary use of color, eyre de lanux’s maximalist approach to pattern design and modernist carlo scarpa’s use of line repetition reminiscent of deco era compositions.
the forces of nature are beautifully articulated in our weather series. richly textured and all-season, these rugs offer classic enduring style.
simple lines and recycled materials create new icons where design and nature are one. handwoven from durable polypropylene and impervious to the elements - this collection performs both indoors and out.
available in a palette inspired by nature.
an african word meaning beautiful. this collection embodies the elemental natural geometry found in Tuareg mats. traditionally these mats were used to create nomadic huts, providing shelter from the elements. the zuri collection celebrates the beautiful symbols of the tuareg people.
the tuareg are a smaller sect of the berber people who predominantly inhabit northern africa. the tuaregs share common cultural aspects with the berbers in their way of life as their economy revolves around trans-saharan trade. this created a significant impact on their art, including textiles.
these mats have been hand-woven by women for thousands of years, using convenient accessible materials such as palms and reeds. once completing the base, they would then decorate them with intricate leather strands of camel or goat leather often adorned with powerful symbols.
the nomadic huts constructed from these mats are pivotal in their survival, protecting them from the heat of the sahara.
kinfolk embodies the ethos of bauhaus design where form follows function. in this modern interpretation the function is simple - a joyful pause.
primordial shapes and saturated color combine creating energetic landscapes. patterns which repeat but are not static - an ordered repetition that continually evolves creating a haptic place for joy and meditation.
earthen hues unite creating color harmony. playful colors contrast celebrating the elements.
in the series shodo the deepest desires of both woven’s designer and creative director act in tandem. the designer practices japanese brush stroke painting - a single flowing vigorous gesture until the ink on the brush runs dry-to seize the essence of energy she always seeks to achieve within a rug design. the creative director is forever fascinated by texture and deeply steeped in a lifelong study of the subtle color combinations embedded in antique rugs such as turkish oushaks and persian sultanabads. he sees the paintings’ potential to turn the abstracted frozen movements into lively, multi-layered rugs through material combinations of silk, aloe and wool, with a touch of masterful color theory informed by the ages. a minimalist meets a maximalist for a dance in unison to create the now signature modern/classic studio woven rugs.
intertwining weaving techniques of moroccan and turkish rugs, lania embodies the collective and expansive traditions that traverse regions, time, and cultures. lania is a suffix derived from the ancient greek word, elaino, meaning wanderer, alluding to not only the nomadic spirit of woven, but also the series’ meshing of two distant cultures and techniques. lania evokes also the latin word, lana, meaning wool. from the rising sun to the north star, nomads for millenia have relied on the night sky and its stars for navigation.
a pursuit to achieve the ultimate artisan wool flat weave rug led us back to early 20th century california design, receiving inspiration from greene & greene’s masterful craftsman architecture, itself taking its origins from the elaborate joinery and framing in traditional japanese architecture, and from frank lloyd wright’s southern california textile black houses, another cross- cultural appropriation, based upon a meso-american revival style. charged by this rich history, the tula rugs are woven in a sumptuous, thick heathered wool, in both warm and cool neutral tones. its layers of texture create a depth of dimension to any space, adding a sense of warmth and tradition, that will turn a house into a home.
the forma series utilizes simple forms and unexpected color combinations, resulting in elegant rugs that are both unusual and transitional. lines, circles and rectangles are composed in multiple textures to accentuate the natural strengths of the highest quality aloe, silk and mohair.
the modern nomad is a risk-taker and path-breaker not limited to conventions of space. someone who takes work or home anywhere and feels comfortable finding many places to work and live in, not just one. mobile technologies allow us to be more nomadic than ever and to shift routine experiences to take place anywhere—a hotel lobby, a cafe, the desert.
the rug is one of the first mobile technologies, and just as with our current mobile technologies, the rug empowers us to be in multiple places of experience. in the home of the modern nomad the static status of the rug returns to the multifunctional heritage of the wanderer, flexible and dynamic, ready to adapt to any circumstance. wherever the rug is, is home.
a 100-year-old antique rug on average has had seven different owners. just imagine the time- traveling stories the nomadic rug could tell. for instance, about the time this antique caucasian ended up in iceland at christmas–with a bunch of turkish tulus and kilims–wrapped around the shoulders of los angeles based artist xarene eskandar during a subzero picnic with smoked salmon and shots of scotch, during a field trip on which she was to shoot a proof of concept for a virtual reality game, documenting in one take the span of winter-solstice light as it migrates across the horizon. the rear of the truck was converted into a makeshift mobile studio–and for days she camped out on her own out in the dark, frozen landscape, in all comfort and with not a fear in the world.
xarene is a modern day nomad, traveling to where her art takes her to be, often returning to faraway places to continue her explorations. she travels equipped with sensitive digital camera gear, and a few carefully chosen items to give her some comfort while filming at freezing temperatures. here she speaks on her artistic practice and modern nomadic existence.
“it’s not that the nomads had no place and drifted. they had many places—many places with attractions that though temporal, were firm. they knew that season after season they could go back to these places: a cool watering hole shared with desert animals, a small grove of doum palms for a desert treat, armed shrubs of acacia for grazing. the nomads didn’t wait in one place for what they needed to be delivered to them; they would take on the adventure of finding what was necessary to their livelihood. it is in this spirit that the contemporary nomad exists. the specific point in time and space that an idea for a new project comes to me, is as significant as the detailed recounting of every couple’s first meeting. it is a meeting of many abstractions: the idea not fully formed but just a spark, in a space that is usually of no significance prior to that moment, and with sudden emotions that fervently race to ‘this is it!’. more often than not, these places are deserts— of sand, of salt, of ice. i go in search of an essence of a place. i find one in a relationship with time that disconnects me from myself and forces me to redefine a new sense of awareness in relation to the space i am in. it also aids me in defining a place on a vast horizon. this is my livelihood and what shifts me into the nomadic mindset.”
“i am impatiently patient within this membrane as i plan towards what will become a film, a short video, or a photograph. i visit the same location over and over and over until i know its lay and how light and shadows fall on it, until what was once unknown becomes familiar to where i can locate it in the pitch black of night, until i miss it and do anything I can to be there.”
“like the nomad on a path for days, i pack my necessities: my filming and photography equipment efficiently packed in one pelican case; cured meats, bread, butter, bourbon, and a small crate of fresh clementines all kept cool in an aluminium box; no more clothing than what i am wearing in comfortable layers; the traditional comforts of warmth and coziness woven in an antique wool rug; the original nomad sleeping bag, a hand-woven tulu; a vintage wool kilim in its centuries-old role as a wind barrier; all packed in the back of my shelter, a singular caravan–a land rover defender.”
“detached from time, i park my roving cave in the middle of nowhere, yet it is a specific somewhere. my car isn’t just parked on a site, it demarcates a place, my camp. one layer of connectedness to the site is philosophical and what brought me to that location in space and in time. i am also grounded within this place by the materiality of my camp. laying on the wooly tulu is comforting by knowing generations slept in the wilderness in the same manner, while draping the antique wool rug over my shoulders as i sit in sub-zero northerly winds is a feeling akin to being wrapped in the fireside stories of the woman who wove this rug a century ago for her dowry, her spirit alive in every single knot. like amulets, these worn objects tie the now back into old time, resounding protective powers through memory and connectedness. as the qashqai say, “where i am is my rug. where my rug and i am is my home.”
in the void of space
we dream. we stare into it
and our minds drift.
by nature of activating the rug through interactions with it – sitting on it,
sleeping wrapped in it, resting on its folds – the rug becomes the place that in turn
connects the body to earth.versatile and resilient, it shrinks the world to size:
where the boundless desert becomes a secure site, unfolding a sense of belonging,
wherever you may be.
back in the old country, when the heat of the surrounding deserts pushed against any chance of the cooler temperatures to trickle down from the mountain, at once the denizens of all classes and ages decided it was time to go to the canyons for some reprieve from the basin’s heat, to dip their toes in cool rivers, drink from cold springs, and collectively share age old luxuries of resting under the shade of old trees on wood benches draped with lush handwoven rugs and cushions, cooling off with a summer soup of apples and rosewater, eating grilled kabobs wrapped with fresh basil, and topping it off with saffron ice-cream sandwiches.
here in the new world, where the west runs out of land, the summers are as hot and dry. the roads are congested and each freeway has a pattern of traffic entangled with the next one. the air is a milky prism of heat and smog. yet there is ample space to find your own place. To escape our basin, drive north east, over the mountains, across the Mojave desert toward where the eastern sierra Nevada and the western great basin meet in its highly active geothermal divide, and the maroon red hill cinder cone in the coso volcanic field stands tall as the youngest mountain of california, its last eruption only 40,000 years ago, proudly taking its place near mount whitney, the highest summit of the lower 48 states.
wherever i lay my rug,
that's my home.
a light breeze shifts the shadows cast by the kilim hanging over
the timeless structure. the baby wakes from a nap on his mother’s lap,
while the toddler at her feet sinks his mouth into a slice of watermelon,
the juice dripping from his chin and elbow onto the rug, where it
collects as a drop, slowly absorbed into the rugged knots.
lying on your back with the firm floor supporting your horizontal weight,
you experience that familiar feeling of when you were a child and
would splay out with your siblings on the family rug, blessed with the
ultimate comfort of a timeless sense of belonging.
a place where
the present moments
are woven into
a play with the richness of texture, in which unusual fiber combinations, a juxtaposition of styles, neutral colors in both warm and cool tones, along with varying pile heights, conspire to celebrate the sensual vitality this creates. between the arousal of both the visual and the tactile radiates an experience greater that its sum total; a sense of awakening as the known becomes unknown, allowing us to see and—most importantly—to feel the familiar anew.
at studio woven we are avid students of the highly structured patterns and clean-edged lines used by the bauhaus movement and in swedish modernism. the pale coloring, combined with a lower pile weave so lines run in a straight fashion, creates a cultured and orderly vintage feel from a non-specific design era, in colorway and weave combinations not available before. with a hint of tron and blade runner, these rugs are perfect platforms for departure into the virtual reality of today’s entertainment media.
the beauty of the unfinished, the soulfulness of the imperfect, the artisan’s skill in service of a greater good to create a versatile rug for a variety of settings, from art deco to california modern, to a future of further thinking and tinkering. a japanese asymmetry achieved via hand-drawn design and muted color combinations delivers a subtle mood of restraint and respite, leading to a place of mindful meditation.
the rug as landscape leads to new horizons. a rolling field of soft ridges with high pile intermixed with a dense flat weave invites us to stretch out and become part of the horizon too, if just for a brief moment, and preferably for a long, luxurious nap on a lazy sunday afternoon, surrounded and held in an embrace by favorite pets, kids, and/or partner. and by the rug, as you sink into the texture of its terrain.
vibrant colors and playful patterns evoke the wide-open african plains, the place where humankind took its first footsteps, leaving behind marks and symbols that resonate with us still, many millenia later. the primal force of a simple pulse repeated becomes a beat woven into a rhythm dancing to the soundtrack of life. in the form of a rug. repeatedly.
the high:low series works with the most elemental form of the line to create dynamic movement and striking contrast through variations in pile height. the lines slicing through the pristine white field of long woolen strands evoke the slashed works of italian avant-garde artist lucio fontana, whose aim with this simple gesture was to reach for the dimension of infinity, a void of vast unexplored territories, to search for further enlightenment. in our rugs, the result is lavish, luscious and irresistible, like the rappers who inspired their names.