"Tribal Rugs: Treasures of the Black Tent" is an exploration of one of the most ancient crafts of the world. Beginning with the discovery of the oldest complete rug, which has been dated to the fifth century bc, the reader is led through the weaving history of the nomadic peoples of Iran, Afghanistan, Turkey, the Caucasus and Central Asia. Each chapter introduces a different group of tribes and illustrates the rugs, carpets, kilims and utilitarian bags attributed to their weavers. Tribal weaving, together with the use of natural vegetable dyes, began its swift decline around the turn of the twentieth century under the twin assaults of civilisation and commercialism.This book is both a celebration of the woven legacy left by the tribes and a tribute to the skill and artistry of the women who created these wonderful works of tribal art. It is hoped that it will provide an introduction to the novice and excite the more knowledgeable to further study. The book is illustrated in colour throughout with examples of the finest work of each tribe, the majority of the illustrations being previously unpublished. This is a completely new edition with updated text and many new photographs.
Brian W. MacDonald was born in Inverness, Scotland. He spent five years in Iran in the 1970s, including a year with two tribal groups: the Afshar of Kerman and the Qashqa i of Fars. He was elected a fellow of the Royal Geographical Society in 1990 for his work amongst the Persian tribes. He lectures on Eastern Rugs.