With a pant load of Chinese rugs, umpteen late 19th/early 20th century Persian furnishing rugs and a particularly noticeable lack of “collector” rugs one wonders why maltzahn and co. are holding this auction for Horst Engelhardt. Most of the Engelhardt goods, comprising the first 90 pieces in the catalog, are far from masterpieces and many appear to be no different than a myriad of dealers hold in their slow-moving (at this point in time) inventories.
Could this be the reason for Engelhardt’s choosing this moment to off them for charity, when biz in Deutschland is practically non-existent?
But there is one point that presents no question: RK.com is again quite sure, as it was with the pinner “charity” sale, rippon boswell is not donating their somewhat exorbitant percentages to Horst’s take. Nor in all probability have they made any special reduction or deal with him.
RK.com says this with no specific knowledge of the deal rather only out of having a good familiarity with the business practices of the Boswells.
If, however, we are incorrect in our assessment of maltzahn’s penchant for asking charity from others while exhibiting little himself we would welcome rippon’s response here so all can know whether or not RK’s comments are well put.
Leaving this charity issue and Engelhardt’s motives aside, let’s now take a look at some of the offerings from the catalog and their catalog entries with comments from RK.com added in italics . Remember the first 90 are Engelhardts and the remaining 137 from other consignors:
Lot 3 MARASALI HORSE COVER Due to evident analogies in its ornamentation, this splendid horse cover woven in the sumakh technique is arguably one of the few examples that obviously originated in the same area as pile-woven Marasali carpets.
This may appear obvious to maltzahn, who pens the catalog blurbs, but not to RK.com. There is not one shed of evidence maltzahn, or anyone else, could marshal to validate such a claim. More likely is the fact this horse-cover design originated somewhere else and was made by a weaver who was about as Marasali as is maltzahn. Sorry, detlef, this is another preposterous attribution like a number of others we will mention.
The white cotton used abundantly to highlight the design embues the blanket with an almost radiant overall expression.
And we might add guarantees this horse-cover isn't Marasali. There is not one recognized Marasali rug with white cotton, let alone this much of it. Yeesshh, does maltzahn really think his catalog readers are as easily mesmerized as the few mokes whose eyes open wide as they're spun another rippon rug-yarn. . Excellent condition. 8000 euro
Lot 21 LESGHI PRAYER RUG A large prayer rug with a hexagonal lattice design on a brown, heavily corroded ground and a mihrab gable placed at the very top end of the field. The palette, knotting structure, handle and the wool used for the pile identify this carpet as a Lesghi.
About the only thing one could be assured of here is the date on this rug translates to 1859. That is besides doubting maltzahn’s confident attribution of this prayer rug to Lesghi, which RK.com seriously questions. Again there is nothing to support, or even indicate, this rug was made in Lesghi or by someone who might claim to be from there.
The broad border zone shows some relationship with the Chichis from the neighbouring Kuba region.
Is maltzahn spinning here or just covering his exposed posterior? What happened to the Lesghi provenance or was that just for everything except the border?
The inscribed date is pile-woven vertically in the upper left-hand corner of the border. – A few stitched tears along the sides; black-brown sections corroded and partially repaired; original selvedge. 11,500 euro
Lot 29 FARAHAN This classic, white-ground Farahan carpet shows a popular cosmological design: the disk medallion symbolises the life-giving sun in its zenith, the corresponding medallions at the ends of the field represent sunrise and sunset.
Cosmological significance, life giving sun, blah blah. What’s going on here? Has maltzahn been bitten by the same mosquito that infected ebberhart hermann?
Without this eternal cycle, the plants protruding into the field would not be able to flower.
Me thinks without this cosmic BS rippon might make some new customers – ones with brains. Ahhh, but maybe those types, even the ones with ever bulging checkbooks, might suss that maltzahn’s not a rug guru but rather just another rug-clown.
– Slight signs of age, a distinct patina, outer borders repiled at the top and bottom. 8000 euro
Lot 54 SONGHOR LONG RUG Replaced selvedges, minimally reduced ends, full pile
Not much of a description but in light of maltzahn playing the rug name game – where did he get this one (Songhor) – guess we’ll forgive him!
Lot Nr 65 KUBA
Produced in the northern Kuba region (or in Daghestan?),
Really now detlef, RK.com can’t see the point in making an attribution and then immediately making another one, question mark or not. This type of flip-flop might make it in politics, i.e. john kerry, but it ain’t going to fly in rugdom (at least not while RK.com is around.)
this small carpet with a golden-yellow ground and a design that has obviously been influenced by Shahsavan sumakhs (S-shaped stylised dragons in the field, Syrga border) is possibly unique.
Wrong again, maltzhan. Rk.com suggests you dust off some of your weighty rug tomes and look at these designs in relation to the work done by Turkmen who were living on the northeastern shores of the Caspian. They most likely are the source for these ubiquitous designs and not the Shah-Sevan who most probably inherited, not originated them.
In 1979 it was published by Herrmann and reappeared in Engelhardt’s book. 6,000 euro
Lot Nr 69 HERIZ
As correctly noted in the 1980 Engelhardt catalogue, light blue is used very rarely as a ground colour in Heriz carpets. This very beautiful example, a firework of colour, also stands out for its kelleh-like format and Bakhshaish design, despite the unmistakable Heriz knotting structure. Replaced kilim finishes at the ends, sides overcast retrospectively, otherwise in very good condition. 25,000 euro
We agree, finally.
Lot Nr 73 GARAHGOZLOO
Regrettably, only a fragment remains of this carpet which was made by the Garahgozloo, a semi-nomadic tribe inhabiting the mountainous region west of Kermanshah (reduced in length, the original was probably a long rug).
Regrettably, it seems maltzahn’s gone off the deep end of the name game again. Who are the Garahgozloos and where did maltzahn learn about them? Could it have been with his ouijji board?
It is one of the oldest and most beautiful published examples of this rare group.
Guess the Garahgozloos were prolific folk, huh detlef?
The wide outer border offered the weaver a welcome opportunity to add several individual motifs (animals, plants) intended to have a narrative function.
Oy, is that one of the Garahgozloos calling cards – cutesy animals – or just their way of telling a story. Just like maltzahn does with his clients…a story here, a story there…
– Cut horizontally and shut, various old repairs. 3,000 euro
Stay Tuned for Part II and some Rk.com picks from the remaining lots, 91-237.