One of the great loves of my life has been travel and I have had the extraordinary opportunity of visiting some of the most beautiful places in the world. Having said this, there is always one place I love to be during the fall season and that’s the magnificent countryside of Bucks County, Pennsylvania.
The gorgeous colors of amber, earthy green, cranberry, rust and blazing red create a kaleidoscope dance, enhanced and intensified by the most exquisite golden sun light. These are the colors you will often find in my rug designs. Warm, rich, soul embracing hues that transform a room into a life enhancing environment.
These precious next weeks I am purposely setting aside the afternoon hours to steal away from my studio to my favorite scenic spots in Lahaska, New Hope, Solebury, Yardley, Tinicum and Upper Makefield. So if you happen to see a woman alongside the road with hundreds of yarn color samples and too many to count sketch pads, you’ll know it is me happily dreaming up the next collection of Nejad oriental rug designs and with no other place I’d rather be.
From my oriental rug design studio in Bucks County, PA to an open courtyard in Kabul, Afghanistan I found myself four years ago drawing rug motifs on the back of hotel advertisements to visually describe what I couldn’t convey verbally to my Farsi speaking, rug weaving, new friend. As many artists know, words were not needed between us because art was our form of communication…that, and a few nods and smiles to confirm that we understood each other.
It always amazes me that no matter where I am, from a rural Chinese province where people still find blond hair a novelty to a small remote workshop in wonderfully exotic India, the unfamiliarity of the place and culture quickly fade away whenever I work with a fellow artisan. I found this to be no less true in Afghanistan even with the constant stream of fully armed NATO soldiers passing us by.
On this somber tenth anniversary of September 11nth, I pulled these old sketches out of my overstuffed file cabinet and looked at the beautiful drawings we made if only to remind myself that most people are good and kind and that we can find common ground in what makes us human.