Contemporary suzani textiles


These handmade Central Asian embroideries are the expression of ancient craft traditions. The production of embroideries, in many forms and styles, and for different functions – the bride’s wedding dowry, equipment for horses and horsemen, and the embellishment of reception areas – was an integral part of the lifestyle of Central Asian people. From an early age, girls in the families of Central Asia were taught the mastery of embroidery in order to follow the tradition of producing their own wedding dowry. Suzani express the cheerfulness and creativeness of the women who made them. These women used their skills to maintain the regional traditions and customs of this applied art. Most Suzani motives carry a symbolic meaning relating to fertility, protection, health and household stability.

Hand weaving makes for slight variations in the surface of the fabric. Some threads are thicker or thinner, and where they cross may at first glance appear as an irregularity. However, it is these slight variations that give a hand woven object interest to the human eye. Instead of the cold regularity of a machine made fabric, you have the appealing variations of an object made by hand.

We now live in a society of mass production, where the importance of beautiful textiles in our environment has been minimized. These textiles from Uzbekistan open a window to an appreciation of fabrics in our environment that is now largely missing in our daily lives.

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