How a Turkish art critic and collector fell in love with the Uzbek ikat and made the whole world admire it
Tashkent, Uzbekistan (UzDaily.com) -- The World Society for the Study, Preservation and Promotion of the Cultural Heritage of Uzbekistan is preparing to release a unique, colorful edition of the series "Cultural Heritage of Uzbekistan in the Collections of the World". The illustrated book-album is dedicated to the unique collection of textiles, which was collected for many years by the famous collector Mehmet Çetinkaya.
Mehmet Çetinkaya is a collector from Turkiye, winner of the Joseph W. McMullan Award for his contribution to the study of Islamic textiles, author of the catalog catalog "99 Ikat Chapans / The Mehmet Çetinkaya Collectıons" (2007). It was this book that became a declaration of love to Uzbek abr fabrics, or ikat.
The collector and art historian says that he first got acquainted with Uzbek culture in 1992, during a visit to Uzbekistan. As an artist, he was struck by the magnificence of the ancient cities of our country, their architecture. Surprisingly, the collector’s introduction to ikat happened two years earlier, during his trip to the United States on the occasion of the 5th International Oriental Carpet Conference (ICOC) in San Francisco.
It was there that Mehmet Çetinkai’s love for abr fabrics began, which continues to this day.
“I began to collect clothes made from these fabrics – chapans and so on – from the moment samples of Central Asian weaving began to appear on the Istanbul market, that is, since 1992. Between 1992 and 2004, the Istanbul market was very active. These years were also active for me, as they provided an exceptional opportunity to collect samples of traditional clothing that belonged to the peoples of Central Asia. I tried to make the most of this opportunity. Many interesting events and memories that I experienced while creating my huge collection give a special charm to each of its items,” says the collector.
Mehmet Çetinkaya managed to make the whole world admire the Uzbek ikat.
“The world-famous experts and connoisseurs of textiles were captivated by the collection of Uzbek chapans at the exhibition “99 Ikat Chapans / The Mehmet Çetinkaya Collectıons”, which we organized at the Museum of Turkish and Islamic Art as part of the Istanbul ICOC conference in 2007. None of them could hide their admiration for the huge variety and richness of the art of Uzbek silk fabrics,” comments Mehmet Chetinkaya.
The basis of his collection is made up of such samples of clothing as chapan, tun, yakhtak, ezor-poncha, paranja, kaltacha, mursak, kamzul, kurta. These magnificent, unique samples are distinguished by beauty and grace, richness of colors, rare color combinations and fine workmanship.
About 100 samples of clothes made from abr fabrics will be included in the new book album "Cultural heritage of Uzbekistan in the collections of the world", which will be published by the World Society for the Study, Preservation and Popularization of the Cultural Heritage of Uzbekistan. At the moment, work is underway to collect material for the book.
“It is a great honor and pride for me that the collection of Uzbek ikat, which I have been collecting for many years, will be presented in a separate book, which is also so beautiful, bright and colorful. It is hard to think of another way to acquaint thousands of people with luxurious examples of Uzbek textiles, except by publishing a book. I am very grateful to the World Society for such an initiative,” said collector Mehmet Çetinkaya.
“Magnificent examples of Uzbek art are kept all over the world, not only in libraries and museums. Real masterpieces, valuable diamonds are often found in private collections. And the collection of Mehmet Çetinkaya is a vivid confirmation of this. That is why we decided to publish a book-album and show people these incredible beauty objects of art,” commented Firdavs Abdukhalikov, Chairman of the World Society for the Study, Preservation and Promotion of the Cultural Heritage of Uzbekistan.