“Working on this endeavor was inspiring since I have always admired Chillida’s work and had thought about the possibility of doing something with his work for many years,” Marquina says. “I was surprised when one of his daughters contacted me and warmly welcomed the opportunity to work with the family.”
Marquina also notes that after 25 years in the business, it is important to have continuous evolution as part of the creative process. “The reproduction of these works into a rug collection shows that our company can start new roads while keeping the same essence and sensitivity when editing carpets,” she explains. “Our goal was to get closer to art. Chillida’s work is admired around the world and this collection helps us to be more international.”
The international descriptor relates not only to the collection’s appeal but to its manufacturing. All of the rugs are handmade in India using traditional methods, and each rug takes about three months to make. (Visit our digital edition to see a video of the process in action.)
“One of four techniques is used to make each rug,” says Marquina. “Hand knotting, which allows for all types of complex designs, is a completely manual process with the resulting carpet being differentiated from others based on the way of knotting, as well as the type and thickness of the knots. Persian hand-knotted rugs are similar to hand-knotting but from another origin. Hand-woven sumak involves forming a thin braid knot by knot, which gives a distressed look with a high-quality result, and which involves a great amount of work and imagination on the part of the Indian weavers. Finally, a hand-tufted technique that allows for elaborate designs but not precise curved ones is used. In this process, a manual method is carried out with the aid of a pistol-like device that cuts wool and inserts it into a cotton-cloth base on which the pattern has been previously marked.”
All of the rugs in the collection feature New Zealand wool—some up to 100 percent—bringing yet another international element to the line. The use of the wool was based on the product’s beauty and strength. It is also appropriate for use in the techniques used to communicate the spirit of each work. Other components include hand-spun mohair and silk.
The Chillida collection showcases a family’s passion for the legacy entrusted to their care, and the commitment of Nani Marquina to bringing the designs of Eduardo Chillida to life in another format—one that features the same level of craftsmanship that he infused into his own work. The rugs in the collection are as much art as a floor covering, and will make a beautiful addition to any space.
Janet Wiens is a freelance writer based in Memphis, Tenn. She was formerly a marketing manager for HNTB and now works with industry clients to address their marketing and public relations needs. She can be reached at email@example.com.