In the original Art Surface catalogue from 1993, the carpet designs had a reference size, but depending on the individual order, this could be changed. The company managed to obtain a wide range of design work and so the catalogue had contributions from about forty different contemporary artists. However, the company failed to gain a significant international recognition, and as a result a number of errors failed to be identified in the catalogue regarding some of the descriptions of its rugs. The company itself is no longer in existence.
For example, in the recent Christie's sale, 20th Century Decorative Art and Design in London, held on April 7 2009, Lot number 64 represents the smallest carpet that Serge Poliakoff produced for the Art Surface collection. It bears the name Composition Rouge or alternatively Composition Rouge 68, with '68' probably representing the year the original design was produced. The rug has been produced in a number of different sizes and was also available as a wall hanging in its smallest version. It is impossible to estimate how many examples were sold by Art Surface, as the company could produce up to a hundred pieces per design.
Identifying Poliakoff's rugs is relatively easy as Art Surface had the name of the artist sewn onto a cotton backing which was then glued on to the back of the rug.
The reference size for this design was 265cm x 195cm, the one on sale was slightly smaller (233cm x 173cm). The description in the sales catalogue mentioning Edition Ewald Kroner, a German company, as the manufacturer, and the 1960s as the decade of production, are inaccurate.
Nevertheless, these rugs remain good examples of 'floor art' and when they are kept out of direct sunlight, they manage to keep their vivid colour palette and so, therefore keep their original design ideal.