Rooted in Kashmir: a land of mystics, poets, artists and artisans

A rug seller in Kerala, southern India, invited Dena Lawrence in for a cup of tea as she passed by his shop daily for a course of Ayurvedic treatment. She left his shop with two rugs and an invitation to his family home in Kashmir. 

The beauty of Kashmir’s landscape and artistry stood in stark opposition to the ongoing violent conflict evident there. Overcome with the perceptible sense of great sorrow, she came to think of these paradoxical circumstances as ‘Perfume & Poison’ and was inspired to set up an art therapy programme for youths suffering trauma.

The Firesun Rug Collection

While training university students suffering from PTSD to release their unspeakable grief through painting, she was introduced to weavers producing exquisite silk rugs with traditional Persian designs like those she had bought in Kerala. Impressed by the weavers’ tremendous skill, and feeling a deep connection to people and place, she commissioned a series of dynamic silk rugs based on her own exuberant artwork: The Firesun Collection

Buy Handwoven Designer Rugs from Dena Lawrence!

Dena Lawrence continues to support weavers in Kashmir, and now works with weavers in other regions too. The boundaries of her art are pushed to deliver a range of rug types that explore the potential when expressive mark-making meets artisanal rug making.