The on-going pandemic has created new directions for many artisans. Cecilia Setterdahl, founder of Carpets CC, is one of those whose path through the pandemic took an unexpected route. Separated as so many were (and are) from loved ones due to travel restrictions, Setterdahl set about channelling her energy into a new rug collection.
‘I was working on a bespoke creation for a client,’ she explains, ‘when I found myself experimenting with flowing lines.’ Setterdah’s description of her unconscious act is similar to the ‘automatism’ of the Surrealists who would relinquish conscious control of their art-making process in order to liberate their ‘natural’ creativity. On completion the Surrealists would ‘discover’ the art they created using this method as did Setterdahl. ‘It was only when I took a step back [from her art] that there in front of me was my favourite uncle from my childhood—Uncle Theodore.’ Setterdah’s delight at defeating (so to speak) the space-time continuum by tapping into automatism, yielded two more ‘automatic’ portraits: Uncle Fred and Uncle Richie.
Unsurprisingly the limited edition capsule collection is named The Uncle Collection. Each portrait has a fluid, flowing style that recalls the spare and spontaneous portrait lithographs of Henri Matisse, while each reveals unique personal attributes of the three men. Uncle Theodore is ‘goofy, fun and easy-going… the uncle that captivates the heart of the family’. Uncle Fred is ‘serious, yet wise with a gentle spirit’, while Uncle Richie is ‘wealthy and unselfish with a heart of gold’, which is why, Setterdahl points out, ‘he’s hand tufted in golden bamboo silk’ on a neutral field of wool.
The collection is hand-tufted in India from 100% New Zealand wool in a neutral and earth tone palette enhanced with bamboo silk for Uncle Richie. Ten rugs are available per design. The collection can be viewed at the Carpets CC showroom in downtown Dubai, UAE.