Blanket (The Berber, Beni M’Guild Tribe, Morocco)

Blanket (The Berber, Beni M’Guild Tribe, Morocco) - Traditional Rugs and Textiles

Blanket (The Berber, Beni M’Guild Tribe, Morocco)

6ft-1 inches by 11 ft-5 inchesHand woven of virgin wool and cotton; coven embroidered.

This blanket was designed and constructed by the Berber, Beni M’Guild Tribe of the Kingdom of Morocco. It is woven with a classic, “Berber Knot” and features an extremely high thread count. Stylistically, rather than the flora and arabesque-like designs characteristic of other textile traditions, Berber rug patterns are "exclusively in straight lines, illustrating simple, geometric forms such as triangles, rectangles, zig-zags, stars and crosses...” (Barbatti 2008).
This specific piece displays an interesting synthesis of several design schemes. It is divided into vertical bands featuring geometric motifs, especially diamond-like shapes. Yet this verticality is abruptly broken by a band of horizontal panels whose patterning carries the eye away. The process of stylizing and preserving the form of such textiles require a deep knowledge of craft as transmitted via oral tradition through centuries in Berber culture.

Barbatti, Bruno. 2008. Berber Carpets of Morocco: The Symbols Origin and Meaning. Paris: ACR Edition.