Created in Kashmir, this textile displays scrolling leaves and a range of flowers including carnations, morning glory, cornflowers and bluebells, reminiscent of Mughal decoration. With its cool climate, Kashmir was a favourite summer retreat of the Mughal rulers, and their presence had an enormous influence on the region’s art and design. Kashmir is famous for fine textiles, particularly its cashmere shawls. Embroidered versions had largely replaced the tapestry-woven shawls by the end of the 19th century.
This floor covering was created using the crewel embroidery technique, where a series of fine looped stitches form a chain. The versatility of this technique allows for a fluid and graceful arrangement of lines and form. Like the celebrated woven shawls, the embroidered textiles of Kashmir, especially crewel work applied with an awl, are made by men.
Text © National Gallery of Australia, Canberra 2011
From: Asian gallery extended display label