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Claremont Rug Company Acquires Globally Significant Private Collection of 19th Century Oriental Carpets

The Wall Street Journal - Market Watch
  • The Wall Street Journal

Provenance of “The Bostonian Collection” Traced to Purchases in Late 1800s, Held in Family For Four Generations

Oakland, Calif., Jul 10, 2012 (BUSINESS WIRE) — Jan David Winitz, an eminent art dealer who specializes in 19th century antique Oriental rugs, today announced the acquisition of a globally significant private collection that had been assembled and held by a New England-based family over four generations.

Winitz, the president and founder of Claremont Rug Company, said, “The 180 piece Bostonian Collection includes a total of 35 antique Persian rugs woven 1800 to 1850 and 15 highly sought after undyed camel hair rugs dating back to ca 1830. Additional highlights of the 180-carpet trove are early to mid-19th century examples of art/investment level Persian Motasham Kashan, Laver Kirman and Kermanshah rugs.”

The Gallery will mount an exhibition, starting July 20, of “The Bostonian.” It will be the first time that any of the rugs will have been seen outside the family since they were originally acquired. Some of these Oriental carpets have been in storage since their purchase in the late 19th and early 20th centuries

“The family began collecting in the late 1800s and were among the first generation of serious American Oriental rug collectors,” said Winitz, who is also the author of The Guide to Purchasing an Oriental Rug. “Two generations added to the inventory, which was displayed at their six family residences.

“The first generation acquired exquisite floral Persian carpets that are among the most rare pieces of this type that I have seen in decades,” he said. “The second generation had more casual taste and, looking to connoisseurship, began adding Persian village rugs such as Bakshaish, Serapi, Sultanabad, Bijar and undyed camel hairs. They were well ahead of their time to be interested in these weaving groups

Winitz said that the third generation spent considerable time in the Near East on business and amassed a collection of tribal and village Oriental rugs, many bought on site. Highlights of their acquisitions include a group of antique Caucasian rugs of great artistic merit from the mid-19th century. “While there are many later and inferior rugs from the Caucasus Mountains on the market today, these are among the most rare to come to market in decades and will be highly sought-after by collectors,” said Winitz.

The other collections that Winitz compared with the “The Bostonian” are the 400-rug “Hudson River Valley Collection” (2008) and the “Intercontinental Collection” (2010). Those collections drew renewed attention to rugs from the Second Golden Age of Persian Weaving (ca 1800 to ca 1900).

Jan-Winitz-New-Portrait-1-150x150
Jan David Winitz, President and Founder of Claremont Rug Company in Oakland, CA, has built a global reputation among carpet collectors and connoisseurs since he founded the company-at age 25-in 1980.