This ivory woollen (Shawl) dating back to the first half of the 19th century was originally a part of the Dr Joan Coleman Collection. It was first purchased at an auction at Christie’s London, in January 1979. Later 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 an elegant square (Shawl) woven with an array of coloured wool on an ivory base. It is woven (Selvedge) to Selvedge with hand-stitched hems all around.
Dated c. 1835, it is woven in a (Twill_tapestry) technique and has no resemblance to any of its common contemporaries. In fact, it has no distinct border, instead, the entire field of the Shawl is filled with repeated rows of queues in floral and (Paisley) motifs of two different thicknesses arranged alternately.
The broad queue consists of a central bouquet tilted in an angle containing large blooms in yellow, blue, and red; other floral and Paisley motifs sprouting all around it in yellow, blue, red, and beige that gives an illusion of gold highlights; and green foliage. The narrow queue contains floral arrangements of one fully bloomed flower in yellow, red, and green that gives way to foliage and floral buds on one side and (Palmette) on the other.
The hand-stitched hem along with the (Quadrille) fringed tassels attached all around the Shawl along its edge renders the finishing touch.