This past week has seen a mini-frenzy of pseudo-ensi being offered for sale on the internet. While the two Chodor-types illustrated below(1 and 2) do have some relationship with the ensi form, albeit a tenuous one at best, referring to the third photo(3), which is actually not a pile weaving but a wool wrapped warp reed screen, as an ensi can only be called silly.
This situation is comical as none of these pieces has, besides some non-descript similarities, any real characteristics of ensi – well, at least none that are based on reality and not in tinker belle fantasyland.
However, this is nothing new as in the past other equally ensi-challenged sellers have tried to attach the ensi designation to weavings that are clearly not ensi. And although RK.com grants these types of later weavings might have had one, two or even more ensi-like similarities, those cases in common with these illustrated here just ain’t ensi, period.
This recent spate of ensi-dreaming began with the offering of the first piece (1) for sale on ebay (the sale ended 10/18/2004). Offered by a seller called wavridr, who is better known in the rug community as bo ryan (aka bo-bo on RK.com), it was described as follows:
“Very unusual Chodor Ensi. Has some condition problems apparent in photos (holes). Otherwise deccent(sic) condition. All good colors. Wefts are a mix of cotton and wool. Approx. 64" x 42". Selling with a reasonable reserve. Feel free to ask questions.”
Ok, bobo, here’s our question: RK.com would like you to tell us all why you believe it is an ensi and not just a later rug with some ensi-like features or did that thought never cross your mind?
Presumably the buyer of bobo’s “I really wish it was an ensi” rug, yurt who paid $1,545.00 for it, also believes in fairytales and RK would like to extend the same question to him.
For all you curious cats, and kittens, “yurt” is Turkmen collector (and twin-joined-at-the-hip-rug-partner of kurt, who would like to change his last name to Chodor, munkasci) david d’hueurle.
The second pseudo-ensi (2) appeared on Cloudbland.com with the following description:
“Rare chodor ensi or rug.19th. century. Aprox.7ft. by 4.”
At least these sellers, the boys from Bath in England, covered their butts by adding the “...or rug…” qualifier. Congrats to them!
RK can not see, besides for some vague associations, why anyone would be want to hang the ensi label on either of these two rugs, though bobo’s is more like it but still too far off the mark in our estimation.
But all this fades into oblivion when considering the third (3) ensi boo-boo made by the seller, michael craycraft, who has become famous for his persistent ludicrous, off-the-wall cockamamie attributions. As far out as some of them have been this one – calling a reed screen, especially one without even one ensi, or even ensi-like feature, an ensi – takes the cake.
Here’s craycraft’s Cloudbland.com description that accompanied his offer to sell it:
“chiy as kibitka or yurt walls are fairly well known but a door in this technique is very rare. One of the advantages of an (sic) reed screen engsi over the interior wall models is that it is a much more displayable and manageable size. This example depicts a Kazak design.”
Duhhh, hello mr craycraft, reality calling: This is not an ensi.
RK would also like craycraft to not only explain his calling it one but more importantly the following obtuse reference he makes “One of the advantages of an (sic) reed screen engsi over the interior wall models is that it is a much more displayable and manageable size.”
Not to mention what a Kazak design would be doing on a exclusively Turkmen weaving form like an ensi?
Let’s face it attaching a “name” to a nameless weaving does help impress clients but are there really rug-clients who are so naïve and ill-informed to swallow such ensi-malarkey?