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Islamic Textiles and Carpets from the Met's Collection

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Hanging

Date:
ca. 1800
Geography:
Morocco, Chefchaouen
Culture:
Islamic
Medium:
Linen, silk; plain weave, embroidered
Dimensions:
Textile: H. 106 1/2 in. (270.5 cm) W. 31 3/4 in. (80.6 cm) Mount: H. 109 3/4 in. (278.8 cm) W. 36 1/8 in. (91.8 cm) D. 1 3/4 in. (4.4 cm) Wt. 67 lbs. (30.4 kg)
Classification:
Textiles-Embroidered
Credit Line:
Purchase, Everfast Fabrics Inc. Gift, 1970
Accession Number:
1970.272
  • Description

    One of the rarest and finest examples of Moroccan embroidery, this wall hanging (arid) displays the most remarkable achievement of a Chefchaouene needlewoman's skills. The arids were used to cover the surrounding areas of interior arches in matching sets. Worked in plaited stitch, these panels contain geometric motifs based on tracery, arabesques, stars, rectangles, and diamonds, all closely associated with Andalusian tilework, woodcarving, and early textiles. Said to have been used as an altar curtain in a Nestorian church in Jerusalem, this particular piece is certainly conversant with a variety of cultures and civilizations. The importance of embroidery in Moroccan life can be illustrated by the ceremony held for every infant girl at the age of four months, when the baby was placed in a chair and given a needle and thimble along with some silk thread to hold, in anticipation of a life blessed with the needle's art.

  • Provenance

    [ Cora Ginsburg, Tarrytown, NY, until 1970; sold to MMA]

  • See also
    What
    Where
    In the Museum
    Heilbrunn Timeline of Art History
    MetPublications
452105

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