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Central Park Carpets


Central Park Carpets, Summer Green


Central Park satellite view, NYC, Google Maps

A series of Persian carpets that depict New York City's Central Park.

Designed by Ido Michaeli and hand-knotted by traditional weavers in Afghanistan.

Central Park Carpets, installation view, Artport | Images courtesy of Artport  

Central Park—the most renowned park in the world is more than a geographical location: it's a Western icon that is depicted here on carpets from the East.


The project connects the tradition of gardens in Mesopotamia, the cradle of civilization, to the West of our time. It shows how the all-American park carries a tradition that began with the agricultural revolution: with the transition to permanent settlements, a longing for nature emerged and with it, the first urban gardens were created. They allowed people to connect with nature and were followed by carpets, depicting gardens, which brought nature indoors. To this day, most eastern carpets depict gardens. 

The Central Park Carpets are an attempt to find the common ground where it seems as if there is none, to deepen the understanding that it is not "us" versus "them" and to bring the poles closer together. It's an attempt to think in terms of global creativity and tell an inclusive story. In days of political conflicts and social polarization, the project strives for the coexistence of supposedly contradicting narratives, in one image, and offers a conversation between cultures and between countries.


Central Park Carpets

Central Park Carpets is a series of carpets in diffrent colors and sizes.


The large carpets shown here are 16 x 4 ft each, and are made of natural wool.


Rich in botanical arabesques, the pattern of the carpets is also an accurate map of the park, including every path, bridge, garden, and landmark such as the Bethesda, the Guggenheim Museum, and the carousel.



Top to bottom: Spring Bloom, Summer Green, Autumn Rust, Winter Night

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Central Park Carpets, Spring Bloom, 16 x 4', high-density hand-knotted wool

Right: Central Park, New York City (including The Lake, The Great Lawn, The Met, Toll Family Playground | Left: Central Park Carpets, Spring Bloom (detail)

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Central Park Carpets, Summer Green, 16 x 4', high-density hand-knotted wool

Right: Central Park, New York City | Left: Central Park Carpets, Spring Bloom (detail)

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"Central Park Carpets is a tribute to my Kurd grandmother who taught me the tradition of weaving. It draws on my multicultural heritage: I was born into an immigrant family. My ancestors were religious Jews living in a Muslim country, deeply immersed in its culture and aesthetics. This was a significant part of their identity, a part they had to leave behind when they immigrated to a Jewish state with Western values. Growing up, I constantly juggled these conflicting cultural identities in a country where my family's heritage was often equated with the enemy. This internal conflict intensified when I moved to the United States many years ago. I became an immigrant myself and had to learn yet another set of cultural codes.

My goal in this project is to illustrate the complexity of identity and highlight the common ground where it seems none exists. It’s not “Us” vs. “Them.” Our identities often encompass elements of those we consider as "Them".

Similarly, modern Western parks are based on the tradition of ancient urban gardens, which originated in Mesopotamia, much like Persian carpets. This project connects Mesopotamia to the contemporary West, blending seemingly contradictory narratives into a single image: The Western and Eastern perspectives nature.


Especially today, I believe that bridging the gap between cultures and nations is more crucial than ever."​

- Ido Michaeli

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Central Park Carpets, Autumn Rust, 16 x 4', high-density hand-knotted wool

Right: Central Park, New York City | Left: Central Park Carpets, Autumn Rust

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"Michaeli refers to Central Park and Persian carpets as two equivalent artistic languages, on the same plane. Despite being different art forms, they depict the same thing: an ideal landscape, — recreating paradise. The Central Park Carpets are an attempt to find a common ground between languages [...] build partnerships where no dialogue seems possible [...] bring together cultures that have grown apart. Michaeli spins a long thread, linking East and West, past and present, in an attempt to restore the Garden of Eden as a primeval point of origin, common to all of us."

- Vardit Gross, curator

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Central Park Carpets, Winter Night, 16 x 4', high-density hand-knotted wool

Right: Central Park, New York City | Left: Central Park Carpets, Winter Night 

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Elements, 12 paintings, watercolor on cotton paper, 18x12" each, installation view, Artport 

Images courtesy of Artport 

A series of watercolor drawings on graph paper, showing different elements from the Central Park Carpets. 

Following the ancient craft of carpet-making, every square in these drawings represents a knot on the Central Park Carpets.


Watercolor on cotton paper, 18x12"

Elements, 12 paintings, watercolor on cotton paper, 18x12"

Weaving Plans


Turquoise Mountain, a UK humanitarian organization, facilitates the production of Central Park Carpets. 

The organization was founded in 2006 by King Charles III to revive traditional crafts and preserve heritages, provide jobs, education, health services, and a renewed sense of pride.