Bouroullec Brothers Design a New Rug for Kvadrat and Maharam

The rug, dubbed Semis, benefits from a special technique that ensures beauty and durability—and a bit of randomness
Bouroullec Kvadrat Semis rug

The rugs are handmade from Tibetan wool on a loom by Nepali weavers. A Tibetan knotting technique allows unique and dimensional constructions without the use of novelty yarns. Courtesy Maharam

While finding inspiration in nature is nothing unusual in the world of design, a new rug from the Bouroullec brothers is distinctly influenced by topography, material availability and development, and a certain degree of spontaneity. Semis, designed by Ronan and Erwan Bouroullec and introduced by Maharam’s Danish partner Kvadrat, mimics an aerial view of seedlings in a field and is available in four versions, encompassing iterations with large or small dots in black or white.

The different colors within each rug have various pile heights and densities, generating an abstract and textured piece. “What makes the beauty of it is the fact that there’s a difference in thickness between the white and the black,” Ronan explains. Another distinguishing characteristic of the lozenge-shaped rugs is the distribution of pattern: The dots conform to a grid in the middle sections but become more irregular toward the top and bottom.

Semis is “essentially handwoven,” according to Mary Murphy, senior vice president of design at Maharam and director of the Maharam Design Studio, and has a “gradual, dimensional character or quality by being textured through the construction, rather than through using novelty yarns.” The rugs are the product of a Tibetan knotting technique that relies on hand-spun, local wool and requires three Nepali weavers, who collectively complete up to 2.75 inches (out of 6.5 feet in total width) per day. Each design is unique due to variations in the shape, color, and organization of the dots. “We try to reveal the marvelous thing of objects that are not produced by machine, but by humans,” Ronan says. “With the vibration of something which is—by nature—not geometrically perfect.”

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Categories: Design, Interior Products, Textiles