Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Woven Gold: Tapestries of Louis XIV by Charissa Bremer

David, Pascal-Francois Bertrand (Contributor), Arnauld Brejon de Lavergnee (Contributor), Jean Vittet (Contributor)


Meticulously woven by hand with wool, silk, and gilt-metal thread, the tapestry collection of the Sun King, Louis XIV of France, represents the highest achievements of the art form. 

Intended to enhance the king’s reputation by visualizing his manifest glory and to promote the kingdom’s nascent mercantile economy, the royal collection of tapestries included antique and contemporary sets that followed the designs of the greatest artists of the Renaissance and Baroque periods, including Raphael, Giulio Romano, Rubens, Vouet, and Le Brun. 

Ranging in date from about 1540 to 1715 and coming from weaving workshops across northern Europe, these remarkable works portray scenes from the bible, history, and mythology. As treasured textiles, the works were traditionally displayed in the royal palaces when the court was in residence and in public on special occasions and feast days. They are still little known, even in France, as they are mostly reserved for the decoration of elite state residences and ministerial offices.

This catalogue accompanies an exhibition of fourteen marvelous examples of the former royal collection that will be displayed exclusively at the J. Paul Getty Museum at the Getty Center from December 15, 2015, to May 1, 2016. Lavishly illustrated, the volume presents for the first time in English the latest scholarship of the foremost authorities working in the field.

Interesting and impressive work of art!

Since I'm interested in art and its different representations, when this book has come to my sight, at first I was afraid it will be a boring one. Because who really want to read about old carpets? o.O?

When in reality, it was a very great read.
This textile art is impressive for its size and often very well detailed that you can ask yourself how complicated it must have been and how much time it must have taken. I have an attachement for realistic drawing and some of Louis XIV tapestries are just fantastic piece of work.

The French King, during is reign, has gathered 304 differents tapestries and was only rivaled by Henri VIII, King of England, in the amount of his possessions.

Coronation celebration and ceremonies, hunting scenes, Old Testament, Mythology or Alexander war stories, angels, nature...

You will discover a lot of amazing scenes as well as some drawings that were made to help the artist to create his masterpiece. Most of the tapestries under Louis XIV brought the art of Renaissance from Rome to Paris and throught the art, you learn a lot about the French history.

It was a great combination between art and history. I'm very glad I've been able to appreciate this awesome collection.

A very good surprise!
Arc provided by Netgalley. I received this book in exchange of a fair and honest review.

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