Object Timeline

2015

  • We acquired this object.

  • We photographed this object.

  • Work on this object began.

2019

  • You found it!

Textile, Aswan, 2015

This is a Textile. It was produced by Knoll Textiles. It is dated 2015 and we acquired it in 2015. Its medium is 49% viscose, 19% polyacrylic, 17% polyester, 15% linen and its technique is jacquard woven, digitally printed. It is a part of the Textiles department.

When world-renowned architect David Adjaye was invited to curate an exhibition for the Cooper Hewitt’s Selects series, he quickly chose to focus on the museum’s little-known collection of West African textiles, including works from Ghana, Nigeria, Ivory Coast, and Mali. Having devoted eleven years to an in-depth study of the architecture of the African continent, Adjaye found that a region’s textile and craft traditions could present solutions for larger-scale design concerns. “These techniques can be…inspirational for modern architectural initiatives seeking to provide a more sustainable and culturally relevant built environment,” he said.
Given his interest in combining traditional African aesthetics with a modern design sensibility, the museum initiated a collaboration between Adjaye and Knoll Textiles to produce a line of fabrics inspired by the textiles in the exhibition. The resulting collection of six upholsteries, two drapery sheers and one wallcovering premiered at NeoCon in June 2015, where it won both the Best of Neocon and the Neocon Gold awards, and will launch in September, 2015. A portion of the proceeds from sales of these products will support the museum’s textile acquisitions.
Combining Adjaye’s unique perspective on abstract geometric pattern systems with Knoll Creative Director Dorothy Cosonas’s deep knowledge of woven and print techniques, the collection presents an exceptionally rich and varied range of patterns and textures. Each textile is named for an African city, and reflects Adjaye’s personal love of African geography, nature and culture, as well as his deep respect for the museum’s collection. "I was very inspired by the wide array of geometry, textures and forms I found in museum's collection of African textiles," he said. "It struck me that together they really told the story of the diversity of these regional traditions of craftsmanship."

This object was donated by Knoll Textiles. It is credited Gift of Knoll Textiles.

Its dimensions are

Warp x Weft: 325.1 × 150.5 cm (10 ft. 8 in. × 59 1/4 in.)

Cite this object as

Textile, Aswan, 2015; Produced by Knoll Textiles (United States); 49% viscose, 19% polyacrylic, 17% polyester, 15% linen; Warp x Weft: 325.1 × 150.5 cm (10 ft. 8 in. × 59 1/4 in.); Gift of Knoll Textiles; 2015-30-1

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<ref name=CH>{{cite web |url=https://collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/152749797/ |title=Textile, Aswan, 2015 |author=Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum |accessdate=22 October 2019 |publisher=Smithsonian Institution}}</ref>