There’s a widespread fascination with tracking the fate of a human contrivance across centuries and regions — mapmaking, prayer rituals, the use of salt, and the like. The ways such ideas and inventions change, where they pop up and why, open unexpected windows onto the social pageant of our species. Carpets of the East in Paintings From the West, a little gem of a show at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, taps into that fascination as it examines artistic cross-pollination between three types of 17th-century Oriental carpets and three Dutch paintings of the same era.
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See also: Metropolitan Museum Displays Islamic Carpets Alongside Dutch Paintings