Art/ Collection/ Art Object
{{img.publicCaption}}

Prayer Rug with Niche Design

Object Name:
Carpet
Date:
19th century
Geography:
Made in Turkey, Mücür
Medium:
Wool (warp, weft, and pile); symmetrically knotted pile
Dimensions:
H. 65 in.. (165.1 cm) W. 50 in. (127 cm)
Classification:
Textiles-Rugs
Credit Line:
The James F. Ballard Collection, Gift of James F. Ballard, 1922
Accession Number:
22.100.22
On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 459
Prayer rugs or "seccade" carpets were among the most popular rugs woven in Anatolia. Common features are the characteristic niche design evoking the mihrab or prayer niche and the smaller size that makes such carpets suitable for individual use. Departing from classical Ottoman court carpets, distinct designs and styles were created over time in villages and smaller towns of Anatolia, explaining the existence of a variety of types. This example from Mücür in central Anatolia was woven upside down, a process in which the weaver first produced the more complicated part of the rug pattern such as the frieze atop the niche with facing arrows that alternate with stylized palmette-like motifs. Further characteristics are the regularity of the almost symmetrical design based on the repetition of geometrized medallion cartouches that derive from floral compositions that are repeated in the border. The choice to apply different tones for small units of motifs, renders this carpet colorful and vibrant, similar to a mosaic floor. The shape of the niche with a staggered arch recalling a stairway suggest the design of muqarnas prayer niches that were so popular in Seljuq and Ottoman mosques and other places for prayer. A slender tree of life woven in vivid green even though its foliage is sparse, clearly stands out from the deep red ground. The gate of paradise and symbols of immortality can be associated with the design of this rug.
James F. Ballard, St. Louis, MO (until 1922; gifted to MMA)
Breck, Joseph, and Frances Morris. "The Metropolitan Museum of Art." In The James F. Ballard Collection of Oriental Rugs. New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 1923. no. 16, p.11, ill. (b/w).

Dimand, Maurice S., and Jean Mailey. Oriental Rugs in the Metropolitan Museum of Art. New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 1973. no. 141, pp. 213, 248, ill. fig. 208 (b/w).

Denny, Walter B. How to Read Islamic Carpets. New Haven and London: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 2014. p. 41, ill. figs. 28-29.



Related Objects

Prayer Rug with Niche Design

Date: 19th century Medium: Wool (warp, weft, and pile); symmetrically knotted pile Accession: 22.100.24 On view in:Gallery 459

'Lotto' Carpet

Date: 16th century Medium: Wool (warp, weft and pile); symmetrically knotted pile Accession: 08.167.1 On view in:Not on view

"Bellini" carpet

Date: 16th–17th century Medium: Wool (warp, weft, and pile); symmetrically knotted pile Accession: 22.100.114 On view in:Not on view

'Lotto' Carpet

Date: late 16th century Medium: Wool (warp, weft and pile); symmetrically knotted pile Accession: 1978.24 On view in:Not on view

Confronted Animal Rug

Date: 14th century Medium: Wool (warp, weft, and pile); symmetrically knotted pile Accession: 1990.61 On view in:Not on view