The major city of Tabriz, located near the Turkish border, is the center of classically designed antique carpets in Northwest Persia. At the foot of the beautiful Elbruz Mountains, Tabriz has a noteworthy history, both as the Persian market center most linked geographically to European and Western commerce, and as the source of the most venerated weavings: the inspired carpets of the Shah Abbas period during the 15th and 16th centuries.
With such auspicious beginnings, during the second half of the 19th century, the city boasted some of the most famous masters such as Kurban Dai, Sheik Safi, Faradji. and most notably, the luminary Hadji Jallili (Haji Jalili), all of whom were responsible for the reclamation of this celebrated past by reinventing a truly memorable Tabriz carpet production.
Since the middle of the 19th century, Tabriz has lead a resurgence in Persian carpet-weaving both for domestic use and for export. With strict standards of craftsmanship and quality of materials used, Tabriz rug weavers produced tight densely-knotted structures and elaborate floral displays. Some of the finest workshop Tabriz rugs, woven exclusively for carpet aficionados among the nobility, are technical achievements unsurpassed by any other weavings of the 20th century.
Like Kashan and Isfahan carpets, Tabriz rugs capture the sophistication and refinement of the classical Safavid Court carpets. Reflected in many fine examples of antique Tabriz carpets is this rich heritage of the elegant court tradition combined with subtle innovations inspired by Western taste and artistry.
The Tabriz rug weavers drew on a varied repertoire of delicate designs: multi-faceted flowerheads, subtle arabesques, lush vinery rendered in naturalistic detail, and precise allover “Herati” patterns, all woven in jewel-toned colors.