Friday, January 4, 2008

Tent Bands of Central Asia in Los Angeles

Textile Museum Associates of
Southern California TMA/SC
Architectural Textiles:
Tent Bands of Central Asia


Richard Isaacson
Oriental Carpet Curator and Researcher
Arlington, VA
The trellis tent is a brilliant invention. It has made nomadic life possible across Central Asia for at least one and a half millennia. An important component of its construction is a woven tent band which girdles the lower part of the wooden roof struts. This critical engineering element provides the tension necessary to brace the roof dome against outward collapse under the load of heavy felts and the force of strong steppe winds. Beyond serving a utilitarian function, tent bands are often elaborately decorated. This talk will discuss the history of the tent, the role of tent bands, and include examples made by different Central Asian peoples.

Richard Isaacson is a retired physicist, who has simultaneously pursued a strong interest in art and oriental carpets. He has been active at the Textile Museum in Washington, DC, lecturing frequently and serving as a member of the Textile Museum Advisory Council. He is a member of the International Hajji Babas, and was a member of Local Organizing Committee for the 10th International Conference on Oriental Carpets (2003), Washington, DC, in which he also served as the Exhibition Project Manager for the ICOC show Treasures from the Museums of Uzbekistan. Richard was the Guest Curator for the exhibition Architectural Textiles: Tent Bands of Central Asia, at The Textile Museum, Washington, DC, (March 30, 2007 -- August 19, 2007), and was previously a Guest Curator for the exhibition From the Amu Darya to the Potomac: Central Asian Bags from Area Collections (Sept 7, 2001--Feb 24, 2002). He has published in Oriental Rug Review, HALI and Steppe magazines, and has written an exhibition catalogue for Architectural Textiles: Tent Bands of Central Asia, which will be available for sale at the program. Richard invites TMA/SC members to bring examples of Central Asian tent bands from their collections for Show & Tell.

Members: Free Non-Members: $7
When: Saturday, Jan. 5, 2008 at 10:00 am
Where: SOBCO International Ltd.
1655 South La Cienega Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90035
Tel. 310-770-9085 Free parking in lot

Khosrow Sobhe

1 comment:

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