In 2014, French artist Alexandre Eudier went with his wife Amelie to live in Morocco for one year, working on an exhibition organized by the French Institute in Meknes. Throughout the production of a unique artistic rug, they fell in love with the incredible artwork done by the craftswomen in the Middle Atlas Mountains. After building up a trusted relationship with local traders, they started to buy rugs for themselves, family and friends. Soon they realized that this could be a joyful business.
Working with film and theatre, Tania and Andreas Jakobsson have always shared an interest in art and storytelling. Andreas as a screenwriter in Sweden and Tania on the production side. When they saw the amazing rugs piled up in the home of their best friends in Meknes, they immediately wanted to be a part of this exciting journey.
RUGS & WOMEN
Traditionally Berber rugs were woven for their utility, reflecting the distinctive climate of northern Africa. The snow-capped, windswept elevations of the Atlas Mountains gave rise to thick, heavy-pile sleeping mats and bed coverings, and the brutal heat of the Sahara inspired light flat-weave shawls.
Born of necessity, the design soon went beyond purely practical concerns, and the motifs of each rug became a doorway to the past. Without a standard written language, Berber women record the myths and legends of their ancestors through symbolism, incorporated into their textiles. Due to centuries of remote isolation, the Berbers have carefully preserved their heritage of technique and knowledge, passing down messages in wool from one generation to another. Many of the artisans weave their tales organically, while others intentionally channel inherited knowledge into the loom. The women who produce these works have a story to tell; while some rugs document a personal experience, other weavings carry a more ancestral message passed down over time.
The rugs' combination of minimalism, handmade details, and bold inventiveness, were first heralded in the West by the mid-20th-century modernists. In the 1930's designers and architects such as Le Corbusier, Frank Lloyd Wright, and Alvar Aalto, started incorporating the plush, soft rugs into their interiors as a counterbalance to the austerity of their sleekly designed furniture.
It is interesting that Berber rugs, with their simplistic form and geometric purity, appear so modern to the Western eye when you know that each one is deeply rooted in ancient Moroccan history.
RUGS & STORIES
Some of our rugs are almost a hundred years old and it's, of course, impossible in detail to clarify all the motifs that are pictured. However, we can interpret certain patterns and symbols, and give a description of the mode of production, the area, and the era the rug comes from. And sometimes even the exact year.
The fact is that most of our rugs actually do have a story behind them, as opposed to new objects solely produced for aesthetic and practical reasons. Berber rugs are not only recognizable by the use of a special knitting technique, but also in terms of motifs and colors, strongly related to the specific region from where they originate. The craft is passed down from mother to daughter, creating a community and a status for the women who master the technique. These women are indeed real artists and create artwork based on their own experiences and life stories.
With traditional motifs, you don’t just get a rug.
You get a story.