by Alberto Boralevi.
This year the Sartirana Textile Show, arrived at its 6th edition, has been moved toward the end of September instead of the traditional first week end of the month. This change was due to several reasons. First to attract more local visitors in a period when schools have already re-opened and Italians are back from their Summer holydays; second to the fact that this year both the Muslim Ramadan and the Jewish New Year and Yom Kippur festivities will happen in the first two decades of September. Third and most important the fact that the 30th Sartirana’s Rassegna Antiquaria, the Antique’s show to which the Rug and Textile Fair has been linked since the beginning has been cancelled for lack of participants due to the peculiar economic situation.
Opposite to the general trend of Antique’s Fairs in Italy and Europe, the Sartirana formula has revealed itself a continuing success, attracting this year 46 International dealers coming from 10 different countries. The Textile Show has now become an independent Fair, hosted in the evocative Pila, the eighteenth century building originally designed for the storage of rice, and in the surrounding courtyard where dealers and visitors sit often to chat, drinking a glass of good local wine or a cup of tea, while attending the daily lecture program. The entrance to the Fair will be directly from the Pila courtyard but it will be possible to visit also the Castle, furnished with selected objects of the Sartirana Art Foundation Collections, including paintings, Jewels, Textiles and Costumes.
Only one third of the exhibitors are Italian; the others are mainly coming from Europe (Austria, France, Germany, Belgium, The Netherlands, United Kingdom) and also from Iran, Turkey, USA, Brazil and even from Sarawak (Borneo). Among them some of the best known dealer and rug experts in the world.
The Three Special Exhibitions
1. Ryijy. Finnish Long Pile Rugs from Igor Ilkka Honkanen Collection
The first exhibition will be devoted to the little known Finnish Ryijy, from the Igor Ilkka Honkanen Collection. The word RYIJY was adopted into the Finnish language from the ancient Scandinavian word ry or ru, originally meaning something coarse or shaggy. The woolen pile made ryijys into warming textiles and therefore covers. According Finnish documents from the 15th century , ryijys were already in use at the time as covers in boats, castles, crown manors and parsonages. Since the end of 17th century they also found their way into ordinary peoples’ homes and became a significant part of a girls dowry and wedding ceremony. They were important objects in everyday life, not only because of their usefulness as warm covers but also for their beauty. A weaver could demonstrate her or his skill through the designs, colours and materials used. The Igor Ilkka Honkanen Collection has been put together in the last 15 years and includes ryijys from end of 18th cent. to 1970’s. The exhibition, accompanied by an illustrated catalogue, consists of 25 rugs, a comprehensive sample of the history of ryijy and the development of their designs and the techniques used over the last two centuries.
2. Antique and Precious Baluch Rugs from David Sorgato Collectrion
The second exhibition, organized by the well known Milan dealers David Sorgato, will present a group of early Baluch rugs recently acquired by Sorgato, after his very successful 2007 first Baluch presentation done in his Gallery in Milan. In this occasion visitors will have the possibility of purchasing the 2007 catalogue at a special discounted price.
3. Sirjand Sofrehs from Collezione Orler
The third exhibition, devoted to flat-weaves, will present 50 outstanding Persian Sofrehs, mainly from the Sirjand areas, belonging to Collezione Orler of Venice. This collection, never published before, will be illustrated by a catalogue indicating the tribal origin of each piece or the area where it was woven. Exhibits will include examples of Afshari, Lori, Rayen, Robar, Qorabba, Soleimani and other tribal groups as well as the so-called Kamo Sofreh from the Isfahan area.
The lecture program, the by now traditional Tea-Time-Textile-Talks, will include short presentations on the same topics of the special exhibitions. Igor Honkanen will introduce his Ryijy rugs and Anette Granlund has been invited to talk about Swedish and Scandinavian weavings. Alberto Boralevi will present the new Sofreh book while other dealers participating in the show will discuss about Baluchis. Among them Dennis Dodds, Secretary General of ICOC, who will present in details the program of the 12th International Carpet Conference in Stockholm and St. Petersburg next year.
Preview opening: Tuesday 21 September from 6:00 PM till late… with a buffet for invited visitors only.
General Opening: Wednesday 22 September (3:00 – 8:00 PM) (special opening in the morning for dealers only)
Thursday 23 September (3:00 – 11:00 PM)
Friday 24 September (3:00 – 8:00 PM)
Saturday 25 September (10:00 AM – 11:00 PM)
Sunday 26 September (10:00 AM – 8:00 PM)
Location: Sartirana Castle, Sartirana, Lomellina (PV), Italy
More information: Alberto Boralevi