Peter Doig for Tomorrow’s Tigers
Tomorrow’s Tigers is a major fundraising project, devised and curated by Artwise Curators for WWF, to highlight the continued threat to wild tiger populations. For 2022, Christopher Farr produced specially commissioned, limited-edition art rugs by 12 internationally renowned artists, including a limited-edition art rug by Peter Doig and a unique, one-of-a-kind art rug by the leading Chinese artist Ai Weiwei (read more here), with further art rugs by Francesco Clemente, Bernard Frize, Gary Hume, Reena Saini Kallat Anish Kapoor, Maya Lin, Harland Miller, Raqib Shaw Kiki Smith and Rose Wylie. The highly collectible rugs were shown publicly at Sotheby’s 24th – 29th Nov, with on-going further sales through artforyourworld.com.
Not only does this raise vital funds in order for WWF to continue their amazing work in helping to save the wild tigers, but also enables art collectors to acquire pieces of this sought-after artist’s work for their own private collection.
Doig explained to The Art Newspaper that he took on the project ‘for a few reasons—it’s a very good cause but it’s also an interesting project. The combination of the two was very appealing. You’re not often offered the opportunity to make something drawing on this incredible tradition, combining incredible craftsmanship.’
Speaking about his rug, ‘Tiger Fight’ and his support for Tomorrow’s Tigers, Peter Doig commented, ‘My imagery takes its tigers from an existing Tibetan rug but adds a narrative that could be about a fight for survival or being made to perform in some grotesque circus with an abstracted human crowd looking on. The phenomenal craftsmanship and skill in the making of these rugs and the brilliant interpretation of my painting prior to this makes for a really collaborative endeavour. It is terrifying how few tigers are left in the wild and the thought of them one day only existing in captivity is truly tragic. Let’s hope that these efforts will have a little impact on the plight of these extraordinary beings that have inspired so much art, literature and folklore since they were first encountered by mankind.’
Artwise has entrusted Christopher Farr, with co-founder Matthew Bourne’s in-depth knowledge of antique rugs and our extensive experience of producing limited edition art pieces, to realise and interpret each artist’s vision as faithfully as possible. For each art rug, we worked with the most appropriate master craftspeople from our trusted network of makers.
Tibetan Tiger rugs hold huge cultural significance. First created in Tibet in the 19th century as an act of veneration, these sacred rugs convey some of the awe and wonder of this powerful and majestic animal. Traditionally the rugs were made as gifts for monks, known as lamas, in their monasteries; the tiger skin motif was thought to protect the person during meditation. Taking inspiration from the increasingly rare antique tiger rugs of Tibet, each artist responded to both the splendour and the grave plight of tigers in the wild, and their vision of what a tiger could be.
Like their new counterparts, the rugs range from the broadly abstract to the more clearly descriptive – all paying homage to the sublime beauty of the endangered tiger. Apart from the unique contribution from Ai Weiwei, the commissioned rugs are each made in a limited edition of up to 10 and will retail at prices starting at £10,000 – £150,000.