Lectures International Conference on Oriental Carpets

Category: Fairs and conferences

Alberto Boralevi, Chair of ICOC Academic Committee, has just released the lecture program for the coming International Conference on Oriental Carpets in Washington DC 6-9 August 2015.

“As far as the lecture program is concerned the Academic Committee decided that this Conference will have a different format from the previous ones. We wanted to reduce the number of presentations to a maximum of 20 talks to be delivered in unique plenary sessions Friday and Saturday, including a keynote opening lecture. We didn’t have the time for a traditional Call for Papers and therefore we invited selected speakers. All proposals were intended to fit in the structure drafted, according to the general topic Carpet Studies and Collecting in the 21st century” said Alberto Boralevi to Jozan Magazine.

The general topic has been divided into five sessions:

A. New trends in Carpet Studies: New discoveries and new fields of research.

Alberto Boralevi, Chair of ICOC Academic Comittee, will speak about Oriental Carpet Studies in the 21st century
Alberto Boralevi, Chair of ICOC Academic Comittee, will speak about Oriental Carpet Studies in the 21st century

This session will be opened by Alberto Boralevi with an introductory talk called Oriental Carpet Studies in the 21st century dealing with the impressive development of carpet studies in the last quarter of the 20th century since the founding of the ICOC by Robert Pinner. Elena Tsareva will then talk on the renovated interest for the earliest carpets and the role of structural analyses. Jim Ford will deal with The Birth of the Persian Carpet, contradicting part of the current theories, most of which can be ascribed to the works of A.Pope in the last century. John Wertime will talk of A Textile Legacy from Neolithic Transcaucasia. Heather Ecker will talk about her current project with the Hispanic Society of America and the new approaches to studying Spanish carpets. The session will be closed by a talk by Dennis Dodds, presenting the role and the importance of Calligraphic and Kufesque elements in rug design.

B. New trends in Collecting Carpets and Textiles.

Koos De Jong will speak about the (im)possibility of independent research in carpet history
Koos De Jong will speak about the (im)possibility of independent research in carpet history

The aim of this session is to show how carpet collecting has been changed in latest years with new private collections coming up, while some old ones have been dispersed in auctions. Four well-known collectors will present their personal stories: how did they start, how their collection changed in the years and tell about their projects for the future. The speakers are Koos De Jong (Amsterdam), Wendel Swan (Washington) and Marilyn and Marshall Wolf (Toronto), who will be interviewed by Hali’s editor Ben Evans about their almost 50 years long collecting activity.

C. Developments of Carpet Museology in the last 15 years
The aim of this session is to present what has been recently done in terms of display of carpets in public museums, as well as projects for new museums to be opened in the next years. In recent times several Carpet Museums or Carpet and Textile Departments have been opened in various countries and many temporary exhibitions have been organised. Walter Denny accepted to deliver an introductory paper to this session with the following title: “Carpets in new museums of Islamic art: interactions between scholarship and museum practice“, mainly dealing with his 8-years experience for the new Islamic Department of the MET, as well as with some temporary exhibitions. Bruce Baganz, President of the Board of Trustees of The Textile Museum and Sumru Belger Krody, Senior Curator of the same Museum will talk about the new life of the Washington Textile Museum since the re-opening last March. Roya Taghiyeva will present the recently opened New carpet Museum in Baku and Suzan Bayraktaroğlu will talk of the eight Vakiflar museums she has founded in Turkey and Northern Cyprus as well as future projects.

New topics

Asli Samadova will be session curator for Carpets and Contemporary Art
Asli Samadova will be curator for the session Carpets and Contemporary Art

The last two sessions introduce new topics that have never been dealt with in previous ICOC. The committee wanted to include them for attracting a younger public and widen the audience to new generations and therefore they appointed two session curators Asli Samadova and Edoardo Marino, belonging to these generations, at their first experience in an ICOC Conference. Asli is a Strategy Consultant with a peculiar interest in Oriental carpets and Contemporary Art and runs a blog Contemporary Nomad. Edoardo is a young Italian rug dealer with new ideas, and also responsible for a NGO Cooperaction running a very interesting project based on Afghan War Rugs called Calpesta la Guerra.

D. Carpets and Contemporary Art: How contemporary artists see the carpets and how they relate to them in their works.
Introduction by Asli Samadova followed by a second introduction by Anette Granlund. Then a panel discussion with a representative of the Dutch group We make Carpets, the Canadian/Iranian Babak Gokar and the Canadian, Berlin based, Shannon Bool, not in person but with a video interview.

Edoardo Marino will introduce the session The Virtual Carpet
Edoardo Marino will introduce the session The Virtual Carpet

E. The Virtual Carpet: Internet and social media, their role for carpet studies and collecting
A panel discussion, introduced by Edoardo Marino and moderated by Ben Evans with five bloggers and Facebook users. With Tom Cole, Steven Price, Francesca Fiorentino, John Howe and Lauren Arnold.

ICOC Academic Comittee
The members of ICOC Academic Committee include Alberto Boralevi (Chair), Elena Tsareva, Julia Bailey, Anette Granlund, Daniel Shaffer, Michael Buddeberg, Asli Samadova and Edoardo Marino.

More articles: International Conference on Oriental CarpetsThe 13th International Conference on Oriental Carpets will take place in August 2015

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