Dilana encompasses a unique culture of contemporary carpet design. This has evolved since the Christchurch rug making workshop opened in 1980.
The workshop has been the catalyst for fine artists, designers and architects to collaborate in the design and production of textile floor coverings. This collective has now accumulated 30 years of specialised knowledge and experience.
Dilana’s extension into designing and manufacturing machine-made carpet was a natural progression for the collective to create organised pattern and compositions over vast floor areas.
History, timeline and milestones
1980 Dilana workshop founded by Hugh Bannerman:
With technical help from WRONZ (Wool Research Organisation of New Zealand) and the New Zealand Wool Board, the workshop developed its hand-tufting tools, materials and methods. Dilana workshop was the first rug maker to be awarded the International Wool Secretariat's quality assurance wool mark in Australasia.
1986 Dilana’s philosophy adopted
“We will facilitate an ongoing study of textile imagery for the floor, its aesthetic function within a given environment and the artistic function within a given environment, and the artistic properties of the textile within its own parameters. The medium is the hand-tufted woolen carpet.” –Hugh Bannerman 1986
1987 Dilana Artist Collection
A series of 12 limited edition pieces, three per artist, designed by sculptor Bing Dawe, painters Don Peebles and Michael Armstrong, and tapestry artist John Hadwen. The collection toured private galleries throughout the USA, opening at the New Zealand Embassy in Washington.
1988 New Zealand Lotteries
Commissioned sculptor Bing Dawe to design floor coverings for their Wellington office. Included one hall runner and three foyer pieces, this being the first site-specific installation for Dilana involving the collaborative process from artist concept, design presentation, client sign-off, making and installing.
1990 Auckland City Art Gallery
Installation “Setting a table” by Gavin Chilcott.
1991 Golden Thread Award Australian Wool Corporation
View Gavin Chilcott 'Setting a table' catalogue (766kB pdf)
1992 Wool Interior Design Award
Awarded to Dilana Rugs Ltd in recognition of outstanding wool rugs produced for the interior design of The Ministry of Cultural Affairs, Wellington – designed by Inscape Design Ltd, rugs designed by John Bevan Ford and Michael Reed.
1995 Barbican Centre for Arts London
Exhibited four rugs designed by Carole Shepheard and Kate Wells. Two pieces were later purchased by the Auckland Museum for its permanent collection.
1996 National Museum of Scotland
Purchased rug designed by John Bevan Ford.
1998 Dilana began exploring carpet manufacturing methods.
1999 Tapistron (CYP) Runner Collection
The first manufactured rugs produced by Dilana using a digital tufting machine. CYP (computerised yarn placement) made by Carpets Inter using 100% New Zealand wool, the series of 35 often irregular-shaped 4-metre long runner carpets were designed by Michael Reed and Kate Wells.
2000 Air New Zealand First Class Lounge – Wellington, Queenstown, LA and Sydney
This was Dilana’s first corporate architectural commission involving manufactured carpet made specifically to artist Gavin Chilcott’s design brief. Noel Lane Architects won the 2001 ‘best commercial interior’ award in Australia for the Sydney lounge – read casestudy >>
2005 Parklands Library
First experience with dye injection carpet-making technology, manufacturing broadloom carpet into a single 200 square metre composition. Designed by Bing Dawe.
2008 Artist Area Carpet Collection
Large room size area carpets of single composition designed by artists Andrew McLeod, Gavin Chilcott, Richard Killeen and Michael Reed. Manufactured using dye injection into an 80% wool 20% nylon cut pile heavy-duty carpet. This created the opportunity for the artists to experiment with the digital process of carpet manufacture.
2011 – Government House Wellington
Carpets and rugs designed by artists Gavin Chilcott, Andrew McLeod, Tim Main and John Bevan Ford, in association with Athfield Architects. This challenging and timely commission has given the opportunity for all Dilana’s knowledge, experience and people to come together to successfully resolve a complex and detailed carpet installation – read casestudy >>