The MAK collection of Oriental carpets, one of the most valuable and beautiful in the world, is presented in a selection of exemplary pieces in geographical and chronological order. The nucleus of the Vienna collection is formed by the former Habsburg carpets of the 16th and 17th centuries: they can be seen in the Upper Exhibition Hall. Anatolian, Caucasian, and Central Asian examples are displayed in the Orient Room, whilst the Textile Study Collection has Turkish Prayer carpets on show, with additional exhibits of embroidery.
In other interpretative options, the carpet frames become a burgeoning source of singular film narratives and confrontations with what is "now." Film works produced for the exhibition address aspects and themes of the carpets and continue them in another medium. The transfer space of the "carpet" marks types of socio-political architecture and is simultaneously micro-architecture: inner/private space vs. community space vs. urban space vs. migratory hybridization. "The rug is a sort of garden that can move across space." (Michel Foucault, Of Other Spaces, Heterotopias)
Direction Angela Völker, MAK custos textiles and carpets
Filminserts Danielle Arbid, Jessica Hausner, Rashid Masharawi, Kornel Mundruczo, Seifollah Samadian, Angela Schanelec, Djamshed Usmonov
Catalogue "Die orientalischen Knüpfteppiche im MAK" by Angela Völker, edited by Peter Noever, MAK, German, 436 pages, 210 color ill., Böhlau Verlag, Vienna 2001, EUR 95
Brochure "KNOTS symmetric_asymmetric", German/English, 190 x 135 mm, 80 pages, ca. 20 ill., EUR 7