Tuzkeez means “wall hanging” in Kazakh. These particular wall hangings are made by the Kazakh women nomads of western Mongolia. The wall hangings honor a birth, marriage or a special event. Each family is very proud of the craftsmanship and design of the wall hangings in their homes. Often, the center piece from a tuzkeez will be removed and passed down to make a new tuzkeez. Some of the wall hangings are dated and inscribed in Kazakh.
The bottoms of the wall hangings are usually unfinished. It is customary for the tuzkeez to line the walls of of their homes. The wall hangings are usually placed behind beds or other furniture, hiding the bottoms.
Most tuzkeez are non-representational art, keeping with the dictates of the Koran. Although, during communist times they would often use flowers and especially stars in their patterns. The Kazakhs are known for their use of dazzling patterns and vivid color.
The border of the wall hangings are made on a treadle sewing machine. The inside pattern is sewn by hand. It takes over 100 hours to make one wall hanging. Most women will only make 3-6 in a lifetime. It is very difficult on their eyes. The making of wall hangings is a dying art-form. The younger women are not interested in learning how to make tuzkeez and the older women are slowly passing on. The wall hangings that remain are becoming more and more rare. Soon they be difficult to find. The rate they are able to be produced is a very small fraction of the rate they are being exported.
All of the wall hangings are rare and unique.
To purchase a wall hanging, please send us an email and let us know the TZ number. Please click on the individual photos to seem them larger.