Stunning 17th Century Wool and Silk Antique French Tapestry, Country of Origin: France, Circa Date: 17th Century – This breathtaking 17th-century tapestry that was created using both silk and wool, is a fine example of the expertise and skill of the French tapestry designers. This one is in a style that is known as “Verdure” because of its abundance of green plant life. Tapestries of this type were meant to honor the natural elements and create a feeling of the outdoors. Today, this trend is once again gaining in popularity, and this piece is the perfect fit.
Verdure tapestries were first created in Belgium, but in the 17th century, efforts were made to set up tapestry works in France. Several Flemish tapestry designers were asked to come to France to establish the manufacturing centers. The French tapestry mills were soon running a stiff competition with the Flemish tapestry designers and established themselves among the wealthier clientele.
This tapestry is special for several reasons. It is made from a combination of both wool and silk, which places it on the upper end of the price range at the time of its production. Wool was used for the majority of the piece and silk was used for highlights to create a more luxurious look and feel. One of the qualities of silk is that it can be spun into fine threads, allowing a high level of detail in the design. It also accepts dyes readily and can be used to create a wide range of colors. If you look at the details on the leaves, you can see these characteristics. All wool tapestries were expensive, but those that were made from silk were four times more expensive.
Verdure tapestries often depicted either a garden or woodland scene. They featured lush greenery as the focus. They sometimes depicted humans gathering in the garden, and a castle or estate in the distance. This lively scene is of a small group gathering in the countryside from dancing and frolicking.
French tapestry weavers borrowed techniques from painters to give the picture a feeling of distance and perspective. This three-dimensional quality is one of the features that give it a sense of realism. This is a gorgeous textile art piece for the fine art collector or for adding a natural feel to the room. It is an excellent addition to a collection due to its state of preservation and historical significance.