This ivory square silk (shawl) dating back to the early 19th century was originally a part of the Dr Joan Coleman Collection. The Zay Initiative managed to acquire it from Kerry Taylor Auctions in 2020.
Dr Joan Coleman began collecting shawls in 1976 and developed her lifelong passion for collecting. She was a regular at the London salesrooms of Christie’s, Sotheby’s, and Phillips – three of the most outstanding auction houses of the period in the world – getting to know the dealers and learning in the process. She acquired vast knowledge and dedicated hours carefully cataloguing her ever-growing collection. She intended to loan her collection to different museums and institutions for the benefit of learning and education. Her collection is one of the largest and the finest private shawl collections to have ever graced the world with shawls ranging from Kashmir, Paisley, Edinburgh, Norwich, France, and Iran.
This is a square shawl woven in silk and wool. Dating back to c. early 19th century this was made either in Paisley or Edinburgh.
Primarily with an ivory background, this shawl has small, sprigged spades in (indigo) blue wool woven all over its body. The four corners have been filled with heavy floral arrangements in quadrant shapes primarily in indigo and (crimson) red with yellow and light blue highlights. The piece was possibly woven on a (draw_loom) as the borders were woven separately and sewn to the body of the shawl by means of machine stitches.
The borders on all four sides are composed of a central wavy vine along which flowers in crimson and indigo are arranged in alternate orders. This pattern is encased between two lines of yellow and green on top and bottom. A strip of the base ivory silk with loosely hanging threads forming a series of fringes is attached to the borders on two sides that give the shawl a delicate finishing touch.
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