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March 2016 Newsletter

ARCS 2016 Annual Convention

April 27, 28, 29- 2016~Philadelphia & NYC

Old Rug Expertise.... and Old Rug Experts

Plan to join us in Philly and "The Big Apple" for the 2016 ARCS Annual Convention. This is a tremendous opportunity to immerse yourself in tradition and history. Traditional rugs may be going out of style, but expertise in old rugs still sets you apart from the crowd and can help earn your client's respect.

What's your "take-away"? This is a great time to improve your rug identification and appraisal skills and actually see and handle a lot of old rugs. You will become the expert in your town.

Highlights: Material Culture Auction House, Glencairn & Philadelphia Art Museums; The Metropolitan Museum, NYC, and a tour at Rug Renovating. That's just for starters.


ARCS at Material Culture Auction House April 27, 2016


The Bob Brand and Liz Werthan Collection
Live Auction | Day 1: Saturday, April 30, 10am est - Fine Art and Works on Paper
Live Auction | Day 2: Sunday, May 1, 10am est - Antiquities, Folk, and Ethnographic Arts
Exhibition: April 23-29, 11am-5pm

Enjoy Great Food!
Aliza Green, Chef Manager of Baba Olga's Kitchen & Supper Club, is an acclaimed chef and culinary tour leader, and an enthusiastic life-long traveler who has worked with local chefs and food artisans internationally to master her craft in the context of culture and history. She is the James Beard award-winning author of fifteen cookbooks and food guides including her newest, The Soupmaker's Kitchen, which the Washington Post picked as one of the Top 10 most important cookbooks of 2013. Making Artisan Pasta was named by Cooking Light Magazine as "One of the 100 Best Cookbooks of the Last 25 Years." Her popular and erudite Field Guide series of books are essential reference books for professionals and non professionals. Green brings her bold and flavorful culinary sensibility and strong commitment to working with local chefs and seasonal foods to Baba Olga's Kitchen & Supper Club.

As one of the pioneer chefs who helped make Philadelphia a national dining destination, Green was also one of the first women chefs to make a name for herself in the region. Earlier in her career, she served as executive chef of the renowned Ristorante DiLullo, where she landed the restaurant a four-star rating. She was chef of the ground-breaking A'Propos American Bistro and served as chefpartner of the local-focused White Dog Café. The Philadelphia Inquirer inducted Chef Green into its Culinary Hall of Fame as one of the city's ten people most influential on food for her extensive efforts in working with local farmers.

"Mine is a cultural and intellectual approach to cooking," She explains. "I got there by traveling, reading voraciously, feeding my curiosity, and by a lot of determination and hard work. While working on Field Guide to Seafood, I traveled to Venezuela to learn about local seafood. While writing Field Guide to Meat, I studied beef from the stockyard to the table in Texas. For Starting With Ingredients: Baking, I worked with outstanding bakers in Italy, Greece, and Turkey. To learn more about fish for The Fishmonger's Apprentice, I traveled to Alaska for salmon fishing season. I worked with pasta masters in Bologna and Orvieto, Italy to perfect my skills for Making Artisan Pasta. You don't lose that knowledge, those tastes, those memories."

JOIN ARCS and Dr. Theodore Mast

Philadelphia, NJ, NYC April 27-29

Theodore (Ted) Mast has studied Near Eastern rugs, rug weaving cultures, collecting and
scholarship for forty years, and earned his Ph.D. in Folklore and Folklife from the University of
Pennsylvania. He has curated museum exhibitions, including "Highstyle To Homestyle" at the
Woodmere Art Museum, Philadelphia, in 1996. Ted has lectured, taught and published widely, and
is currently a contributing editor to Hali magazine.

-- The Marquand Animal Rug --

During the tour of the Philadelphia Museum of Art, Ted will give an informal talk regarding the
Marquand animal rug, among the most historic and controversial rugs in existence. No other rug
can rival its incredible back-story: It is said to have been a gift from the Shah of Persia to the
Sultan of Turkey, was among the possessions of Sultan Abdul Aziz at the time of his death in
1876, and was brokered to Henry G. Marquand. Early rug scholar John Kimberly Mumford said it is
"probably as near perfection as a woolen carpet of the East has come or will come". In 1903 it was
purchased at auction by the illustrious Vitall Benguiat, who paid $38,000 for it and kept it for twentynine
years while leading scholars argued and dithered over its authenticity. Concurrently it was the
subject of lawsuits involving some of the wealthiest art collectors of the era. Its age, if not complete
provenance, was finally established in 1996.

We invite you to Learn More, and hope to see you there!

A History of Hand-Woven and Machine-Made American Rugs

By Grady Ferguson

Even though America has a short history as a country, it has gone from a land of immigrants to a world leader in economic growth and industrialization. Through this growth new manufacturing processes and consumer demands has help dictate the design, material and cost of rugs in the marketplace. We evolved from making rugs from scrap material such as old clothes to natural fibers such as corn husk to synthetic materials, plastics, latex and even metals. It will be interesting to see what the next generation of new rug designs and materials will be in demand by the American public. Unfortunately they probably will not be of the quality and durability of the past generations of rugs, but dependent on passing fashion and made with inferior materials.

The early settlers had very limited resources so household rugs were made of materials that were easily attainable to them. Sometimes rug making would depend on what part of the country you settled in that dictated what materials were available. Rugs could be made of old clothing or other cloth material which were called rag rugs. These rugs were durable and practical. Rag rugs were reversible and also washable when it could not easily be swept clean. These rugs were woven in homes and in some mills throughout the 19th century. The E. C. Beetem & Sons CO. produced the rugs in Carlisle, Pennsylvania from 1876 until 1951 when it closed its doors. Rag rugs are still produced today but most are woven on power looms with a small percentage woven on old hand looms.