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The carpets of the Middle Atlas and Eastern Morocco

These large rectangular carpets in general adapt to the dimensions of tents and rooms in low houses and can be used as bedding thanks to their thickness. Predominantly dark red, the carpets woven in the middle atlas are the prerogative of the Zemmour, Ait Youssi, Guerrouane, Beni M'tir, Beni M'guild, Zaiane, Beni Ouarain tribes, etc.. Each carpet has its own personality, but they are not always easily identifiable from each other. The Middle Atlas carpets, around Meknes, are dominated by dark red, with multiple shades, the wind, the flap, the brown, the ivory white melt into it in small touches. On the other hand, in the Middle Atlas East, the carpets of the Beni Ouarain are distinguished by their unbleached color, their shiny wool and their simple black or brown geometric patterns.

In the Middle Atlas where the pastures are abundant, the wool is of a superior quality, and the carpets are knotted with numerous and very tight strands obtained by the succession of Berber knots. These carpets of high wool are robust and their long soft fleece lets appear the composition on the short face of the carpet. The geometrical rigour of the patterns contrasts with the freedom of composition and the asymmetry which characterizes the structure of these carpets. The arrangement of triangles, rhombuses, broken lines, stars and checkers gives the overall composition a remarkable balance. Rare are the carpets with a central pattern.

The height of the wool strands -or carpet- can reach several centimeters or not exceed a few millimeters depending on the region. Exposed to wear and tear, the edges of the carpets are reinforced by doubling the external threads of the warp at the time of the assembly of this one. In the east of Morocco, the carpets are already inspired by Algeria. In the region of Oujda and Taourirt, the carpets of big dimensions, very elongated, with bright colors, form a set distinct from the other Moroccan rugs One meets them only rarely and almost only in their region of origin.

"Dr Mohamed sijelmassi , les arts traditionnels, 2022, Aubanel, Geneve, Suisse. Page number : 55."


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