ABRASH

ABRASH

ON FORTUITY - THE RANDOMNESS OF COLOUR CALLED ABRASH

" I tend to reflect that handmade objects....give off a life force, an indefinable resonance, that mechanically produced objects cannot match" Giles Auty, in The Australian.

And Jon Thomson ..." It was an education for me to witness the amazement and disbelief of an educated Persian carpet dealer, recently arrived from Iran, when he saw the price paid at auction for a kazak, a coarsely woven, crude looking village carpet with a bold pattern and strong colours. ‘They (tribal/village rugs) are so coarse and ugly, how can they pay so much money?’ he was genuinely distressed. For him the ideal of beauty and desirability was a rug with a perfectly ordered, detailed pattern, finely worked in evenly balanced colours without any mistakes."

ABRASH - The Persian word has entered English because there was no existing term to explain the abrupt changes in the intensity of colour often seen in good rugs. It is from the Arabic root meaning silky and is most commonly caused by the weaver using wool from different dye batches or dyed at different times in the vat. Strands dyed towards the end of the process are normally lighter than those dyed at the beginning when the dye has been freshly prepared and is at full strength. This can be an indication of authenticity as it rarely occurs in mass produced rugs, for although they may still be made by hand the very nature of the cost savings of large production runs requires extensive and therefore uniform dyeing.