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Mehmet Çetinkaya’s Sultanahmet emporium used to go under the name of Maison du Tapis d’Orient, and was confined to a tiny shop in the Arasta Bazaar behind the Blue Mosque. It now occupies a handsome three-storey gallery, with an adjoining design and artefacts shop next door. In Cornucopia 32, we called it ‘the antithesis of the archtypal carpet dealer’s, a calm, dignified gallery where pieces are hung, brilliantly lit, as works of art’. And the man himself? ‘Mehmet Çetinkaya is tall and skinny, with an ascetic scholarly demenour… His knowledge is profound, and his substantial collection makes a visit here almost better than one to the nearby museums, because you can look, touch and, of course, buy’. His ikat çapans grace the cover of Cornucopia 37 – they were exhibited at the Museum of Turkish and Islamic Art of the meeting of the ICOC in Istanbul.
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