Masterpieces That Mesmerize

Masterpieces That MesmerizeMasterpieces That Mesmerize

A five-minute stroll from the Museum of Contemporary Art, through the gorgeous Laleh Park, Iran Carpet Museum displays carpets from all over Iran through the ages, and is the highlight of most tours starting out from Tehran.

In 1962, the initial building of the museum was erected as a “carpet gallery”, containing 20 carpets. It remained half-constructed for 14 years, before it was officially inaugurated in 1976, when experts on carpets were called to travel around and collect various rugs, creating a collection comprised of 18th century antiques to contemporary carpets. Later some exquisite carpets from Sa’dabad palace in north Tehran were added to the collection.

The museum building which was designed by an Iranian architect covers an area of 3,400 sq meters. The concrete frames surrounding the building are said to have been inspired by the design of a typical carpet loom, according to

on the ground floor across 1500 sq meters, 150 carpets are on permanent display There are carpets from Kashan, Kerman, Isfahan, Tabriz, Khorasan, Kurdistan, among others. Carpet weaving tools and materials are also on display. Chairs at regular distances invite the visitors to sit and enjoy watching the masterpieces of patient artisans of the past.

The upper floor is dedicated to temporary or seasonal exhibitions lasting two to three months.

The rugs are made of organic materials and hence susceptible to deterioration by mold, fungi, bacteria, insects, and pests; therefore the interior is strictly climate controlled with the temperature maintained between 19 and 24°C, and the moisture between 52% and 54%.

The carpets are encased, with minimal exposure to the outside environment. Narrow gaps let in a faint light. Only the central pool-house has natural lighting. The sunshine loses its harmful radiation, when passing through skylight of the pool-house.

The galleries are lit with lamps whose frequency range excludes ultraviolet and infrared radiations; the spectrum which is harmful for carpets. The lamps run on rails, with adjustable angles.

The museum complex includes training rooms, a restoration workshop, an amphitheater showing specialized films, a tea-house on the corner, and a library containing books in different languages, and a great source of reference for researcher specializing in this field. There is also a rug repair shop.

To preserve the art of pile weaving and flat weaving the museum organizes a number of training courses on rug weaving, motif design, and repair and darning. Trainees who pass the exams receive a certificate.

  Lachak Toranj

Iran Carpet Museum houses the oldest known carpet in Iran known as Lachak Toranj. Displayed in the central hall of the museum, it is one of the 12 carpets of 17th century Polish prince Roman Sanguszko whose Persian carpets collection received global recognition at an Iranian at exhibition in London in 1972.

Dating back to the Safavid era, the carpet is woven after the style of contemporary miniature paintings. It is 5.86 meters long and 3 meters wide. There is a golden blossoming citrus motif at the center, called ‘toranj’ in Persian. Around the ‘toranj’ are angels, peacocks and other birds with wings spread out, and a scene of a fight between a dragon and Simorgh, the mythical bird.