Looking West to the art of the Navajo people of the Four Corners region of the US, which covers more than 27,000 square miles of land in Arizona, Utah and New Mexico, via the geometric and abstract patterns, studies and learnings from the Bauhaus movement, in particular those of Josef Albers, this kelim, woven in the Fars region of Iran, resonates multiculturalism. The details in the design of this kelim are all Persian, vivid with the tribal iconography of the Ghashgha’i nomads of Southern Iran. But the overall design celebrates firstly modern Western art and secondly the creativity of the Navajo tribal people. The finest highland wool from the Zagros Mountains of Iran, hand-carded and hand-spun, is used to weave this intensely coloured flatweave - all dyed using natural vegetable dyes.
Soheila Shayegan is an Iranian flatweave designer based in Cyprus whose work has been exhibited both nationally and internationally. She combines a contemporary style with traditional production methods using the finest materials. “My designs break away from conventional styles… I like combining classical elements from oriental carpets with modern influences, often with my personal interpretations of minimalist paintings,” as she puts it. Her entrepreneurial skills led her to set up a company dedicated to the art and artistry of traditional flatweave weaving and producing custom-made designs. In her words, her main career objective is to “resurrect and salvage ancient woven techniques and revolutionise the concept of handwoven art.” To this end, she has contributed voluntarily to the Iranian Handicraft association for a decade. The range of her flatweave designs for Zollanvari spans large, from our Baneh and Ikat kelims, many of which have been shortlisted by the Carpet Design Awards jury, to our recently launched Zillu Collection.