TURKISH CARPETS AS A SYMBOL OF STATUS IN EUROPEAN PAINTING: EXAMPLE OF LONDON NATIONAL GALLERY
İzmir Ekonomi Üniversitesi, Güzel Sanatlar ve Tasarım Fakültesi, Tekstil ve Moda Tasarımı Bölümü
Keywords: European painting, National Gallery London, Turkish Carpets, Carlo Crivelli, Da- vide Ghirlandaio, Quinten Massys, Hans Holbein the Younger, Lorenzo Lotto.
Turkish carpets have had an important place in the West for centuries. Even though the first information regarding the export of Turkish carpets to Northern and Western Europe dates back to XIth century, it can be said that the exact and clear evidence of this export and its effects on these societies dates after 1453. Vetenian merchants played a major role in the familiarization of Turkish carpets to Europe.
In the Middle Ages in Great Britain the carpets were laid in front of the altar in churches during the ceremonies or on festive days. Until the mid XVIIth century, the floors were made of stone, tile, wood planks or beaten earth in royal, aristocratic or burgher houses. They were covered with layers of straw, rush, or various grasses, to lay carpets on the floor was not a tradition. In the XVth century, only royal families and aristocratic families could afford to buy Turkish carpets. In this century, car- pets were sold for much higher prices than any other Oriental goods and some works of art. Turkish carpets were displayed as status symbols in European palaces, churches and aristocratic houses.
Turkish and other oriental carpets were depicted in European paintings. These carpets can be seen in religious paintings and then in the portraits of wealthy people. In this study, a group of pa- intings in The National Gallery-London, dated between XVth-XVIIth century were examined. The common feature of these paintings is that they are examples emphasizing how valuable and impor- tant Turkish carpets were for Europe at that time. Selected works are by Carlo Crivelli, Master of Saint Giles, David Ghirlandaio, Quinten Massys, Young Hans Holbein and Lorenzo Lotto.