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The Carpet and the Connoisseur: The James F. Ballard Collection of Oriental Rugs
During the early 20th century, St. Louis businessman, and avid world traveler, James F. Ballard became one of the country’s top collectors of Oriental carpets. Ballard ultimately divided his collection of carpets between the Saint Louis Art Museum and The Metropolitan Museum of Art in 1929 and 1930. As a result the Museum has amassed a collection of Oriental rugs recognized as one of the most significant collections in the world. The Carpet and the Connoisseur, on view in the Museum’s Special Exhibition galleries, will highlight 51 carpets from the Ballard collection as well as two 19th-century Persian pleasure tents that were used for outdoor gatherings.