Somayeh Salehi is an Iranian carpet designer who could take her steps further Iranian boundaries and she is more encouraged to participate in global events due to winning the 2nd rank award of Vista Competitions in 2015. Sometime ago, we arranged an interview with her due to this success in order to talk to her on motivations of a young designer in these hard days of carpet designing of the world.
•Please brief us on your education and professional activities.
I am a graduate of a bachelor degree in the field of Carpet Designing and a master degree in Art Research from Art University of Tehran and I have managed to win twice the 1st rank of the country in the area of carpet designing in the Nation-wide Festival of Carpet Student held by the State Scientific Association of Carpet and Gereh Garden Festival held by Iran Carpet Joint Stock Company. Also I could obtain the 1st rank of Designing Articles in the Nation-wide Festival of the State Carpet Students held by the State Scientific Association of Carpet in Tabriz under title of «Pomegranate, from Myth to Image» that aimed at studying Shah Abbasi Flower.
•When you entered in carpet designing sector? What is your concentration area, hand-woven or machine carpets?
Since 2005, when I was a bachelor degree student, I cooperated professionally with several companies in the area of designing modern and traditional machine and hand-woven carpets. I can say that I have worked in both areas.
•How do you assess the status carpet designing in Iran?
In terms of social and art status, a carpet designer is not of the social respect that an architecture possesses, but the attitude of the society toward carpet designers is changed drastically and is being improved. But in financial point of view, price of designing a carpet is not precious for hand-woven manufacturers but many manufacturers have believed that in this hard competitions, creative and innovative designing in design and color is necessary and paying for a good design, is considered as an investment not a cost.
•You have recently won a prize. What was title of the competition? Why it was held and why your work was elected to be the 2nd winner?
Vista is the biggest virtual carpet ship in the world. Since 2007, it annually holds an International Modern carpet Designing Competition. This year, I managed to win the second rank of this competition from among 18000 design from 53 countries. The winner designs should follow minimal style and would be drawn with the least color and form and subject of my design was a beach that sought for bringing peace to homes.
•How winning this prize affects your future activities and performance?
Winning such titles results in a better realization on my capabilities and by introducing it in international area, may pave the way for development of activities, specially foreign countries and more advancements.
•What is future plan for your profession?
My plan, or better to say that, my desire is to open the best designing atelier of carpet by help of talented designers in which I would be able to revive original designs of each regions that is adjusted with the modern taste.
•How do you assess future of your profession in the Middle East?
Future of this profession in Iran and the Middle East depends upon process of production of carpet in this region. So far as the manufacturers of machine and hand-woven carpets are not able to risk and do not believe in their designers, a designer would not be able to express his/her ideas and the industry would not be able to make the required advancement.