During what can most diplomatically be described as a hectic year, little pleasures like a well-designed rug can feel like a breath of fresh air—and Colin King’s calming capsule collection for Beni Rugs is here to deliver. Departing from the traditional black-and-white Beni Ourain rug that’s well-known in Western markets, the sought-after interior stylist introduced large stripes and blocks of saturated blues, rusty tones, and deep yellows to a brand-new octet of rugs—his first-ever experiment in the medium—called The Shape of Color. Appropriately, King cites the beloved Color Field painters Mark Rothko, Barnett Newman, Clyfford Still, Josef Albers, and Kenneth Noland as chief inspiration: “In particular, I was struck by how Donald Judd used color as material,” says King. “The shapes he used were simple because they’re only meant to be carriers of color; to transport the color.”
Beni Rugs has built a reputation for exquisitely crafted Moroccan rugs that are hand-produced by the North African country’s nomadic Berber people using centuries-old flat weaving techniques. “In an ever-modernizing world, the Berbers stand out as one of the last bastions of tradition and craft,” says King, whose partnership with Beni evolved organically during a trip to Morocco with the founders, Robert Wright and Tiberio Lobo-Navia. The trio was exploring the country’s historic architecture, refined craft traditions, and rich cuisine while tackling a different project with the photographer Simon Watson, but after wandering the markets of Marrakech and enjoying casual conversation over tagine and tea, a follow-up collaboration seemed inevitable.