Possibly Pall Mall Deposit and Forwarding Co. Ltd. Deposit Inventory, 14 August 1950, best bedroom, ‘124. Oriental rug’, (Laurence Olivier Archive, The British Library, London, Add MS 79838).
Larry was posted by the RAF in WWII to Worthy Down near Winchester. He got permission to move out of the officers' mess and took a bungalow about three miles from the aerodrome. Nöel Coward felt that this was a mistake and it was better to be a part of the comradery at the base (Graham Payn and Sheridan Morley ed., The Nöel Coward Diaries, Boston, 1982, p. 89). However it afforded Larry the opportunity to create a special space for himself and Vivien. The actress would come for Sundays whilst she performed in ‘Doctor’s Dilemma’ in London and he could also be joined by other friends. In true Olivier fashion it was beautifully appointed and according to Coward, furnished with pictures by Sickert and Boudin and embellished with Indian rugs and an Aubusson carpet. See Philip Ziegler, Olivier, London, 2013, p. 100 who writes ‘For him it was an oasis in a barren world’.
145cm across the top, 149cm across the bottom, 197cm across the left hand side, 192cm across the right hand side, 198cm length in the middle.
Overall wear, particularly to the top left quadrant, most noticeable in the ivory/yellow field. Pile varies from 2mm down to foundation. There are two blue surface marks found to the centre left of field, as visible from the photographs. To the underside of the rug are six cotton cobbled patches, likely to re-enforce areas of weakness, restoration not evident. With later blue side cords. Minor losses at each end, knot overlocked. Deep red border with foliage and animals is striking, with cheerful drawing to the field. First hand inspection advised.
"In response to your inquiry, we are pleased to provide you with a general report of the condition of the property described above. Since we are not professional conservators or restorers, we urge you to consult with a restorer or conservator of your choice who will be better able to provide a detailed, professional report. Prospective buyers should inspect each lot to satisfy themselves as to condition and must understand that any statement made by Sotheby's is merely a subjective, qualified opinion. Prospective buyers should also refer to any Important Notices regarding this sale, which are printed in the Sale Catalogue. NOTWITHSTANDING THIS REPORT OR ANY DISCUSSIONS CONCERNING A LOT, ALL LOTS ARE OFFERED AND SOLD AS IS" IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE CONDITIONS OF BUSINESS PRINTED IN THE SALE CATALOGUE."