Artist Profiles

Artist:

Anvar Kurbanov

Region:

South and Central Asia

Country:

Uzbekistan

Media/General:

Rugs

Year(s) Attended:

Santa Fe: 2019

About:

Comprising several dozen expert textile artisans, all based in the ancient city of Bukhara, Uzbekistan, the workshop of master weaver and designer Anvar Kurbanov produces richly hued and elegantly patterned kilim-style as well as pile carpets in traditionally vibrant colors and designs.

“In my work,” explains Kurbanov, “I only use time-proven tools and materials, just like my grandfather did and just like he taught me to do.” This means Kurbanov selects only the finest, regionally sourced sheep and camel wool, as well as exquisite, pure silk. The elegantly vibrant hues of each carpet are achieved with all-natural, locally sourced dyes, originating from materials like onion skin, grape leaves, and walnut husks. Though Kurbanov’s team sticks to traditional motifs, flat-weave kilim designs are also applied to pile carpets with strikingly beautiful and sumptuously soft results.

It is often said that the region of Bukhara, Uzbekistan is home to not only some of the most ancient carpet-making techniques in the world, but also some of the most resplendently beautiful. To begin, wool yarn is prepared by washing it in hot water, drying it, then soaking it in liquid dye for a number of hours. Next, the wool dries in the sun while the loom is set up. Once the warp is stretched, the process of weaving begins, which, depending on the intricacy of the desired product, can take up to a year to complete. In most of the carpets made in Kurbanov’s workshop, traditional Bukhara rug patterns—some of which date back to the 16th century—serve as a major source of inspiration. This rich history fascinates Kurbanov, who remarks “It is said that carpets are like music for the eyes. I can only reply that my best symphony is yet to be written.”