The rug world's biggest star performer, or should we say star poser, is jon thompson the ex-doctor who was, as rumor has it, asked to leave the medical profession because of his spending more time with carpets than patients. I donít care enough about this self-propelled greedy ex-Turkmen rug-collecting imp to delve into whether or not he was kicked out of the medical system or just decided to "retire" from it. One thing is sure ole jonny-boy's racking up the miles - being the May Beattie scholar, ho ho on that one, at the Ashmolean; writing the catalog for the latest Sheik Saud exhibition in Qatar "Silk and Ivory" (now tell me folks what the f-ck does thompson know about silk or ivory?), giving the keynote "speech" at acor (which was nothing more than a photo op to hype himself rather than even bother to discuss "rugs") plus who knows how many other rug club lectures and honorariums the ex-doc has chalked up in the last year or so.
Granted thompson has a fluid writing style, however, the vast majority of the content in his works is far less enviable. In fact, to say thomspon's writing is flashy but not fleshy might be something of an understatement.
The best work he has done, the annotation of Bogolubyov, is excellent even though there are stories swirling around that thompson pinched the S group identification from another researcher. After that, as far RK.com is concerned, its all down hill from there. Let's remember the Imreli fiasco thompson tried to float in his textile museum catalog for the Turkmen show in DC in 1980. After being highly criticized by many for the abysmal lack of support, real or even imagined, for his Imreli thesis thompson tried to make light of his boner by saying it was a joke. Only in the rug world, where idiots with checkbooks parade their ignorance and lesser mortals cheer them on, could someone live down such a disaster and come up roses.
The Imreli stunt was bad but thompson's next mis-step was an even larger one- the all and everything cloud-collar that was, according to thompson, the catch-all source for many rug designs. Gosh, wasnít the mutter goddesse good enough jonny-boy? Rk.com wonders whether the cloud-collar was just another dopey thompson brand of dull English humor or did he try to do the imrelis one better? Then of course do you remember this photo, folks:
One thing is sure, thompson does but RK.com is sure he wishes you didn't. This bogus repro of an early Turkish animal rug was purchased by perhaps the biggest parading checkbook the rug world ever has or will spawn, george hecksher, for a reported $150,000. It was purchased on the advice of thomspon and that three time disgraced loser in rugdom, alan marcuson. Hecksher really can't be blamed for being so stupid as to spend money for a fake, he never knew anything other than how to pronounce rug names anyway, but thompson and marcuson deserved to have been run out of rugdom on a rail. One wonders if both of them didnít have some other agenda other than just being so apparently - stupid?
What was truly the kicker to this episode - the fact that both these supposed "ex-purts" needed to rely on a carbon 14 tesr to convince them the piece wasn't "right" - made them look even dumber than dumb. Anyone with any real experience in early Turkish rugs could have made it for a repro from 6 feet away, let alone handling it. Wow what fools.
Hecksher took his lumps and was heard to say afterwards " I'm glad I bought it because now the rug world knows itís a fake". What can you say to that other than Gee Whiz, george, wanna buy another one?
Both thompson and markitupsome marcuson rolled on as if nothing had happened - the rug world apparently didnít' even bother to register the fact these two fools couldn't tell repro from a reality.
Ok marcuson has blasted himself out of the rug world through his now well known financial bankruptcy that cleaned out his investors - family and friends - but thompson is still the rug world's darling. Strike one= Imreli. Strike two= the cloud collar. Strike three=the hecksher animal rug fiasco. In baseball youíre out, jonnyboy but in rugdom? Nope. Will strike four finally make the dunces and dopes - the majority of rug world's population - wake up to the fact thompson is just another creepy shyster out to make a buck and get a free lunch besides?
Clowns like thompson should be laughed outta town, not fÍted. But hey am I the only one laughing??