Breathtaking 18th Century Antique French Beauvais Tapestry, Country of Origin: France, Circa Date: 18th Century – This rare tapestry from the 18th century is an exquisite example of the works of the Beauvais Manufactory. Existing Beauvais tapestries are a rare find and are considered world treasures. The subject of the textile art creates a stately presence and shows the exceptional skill and artistry that made these works some of the most desirable in the world.
The Beauvais tapestry works was second in importance only to the famed Royal Gobelin tapestries. The Beauvais Manufactory was in operation from 1664 to 1774. Many of the tapestries were part of a series that related to ancient Greek myths and contemporary social themes of the time. The use of color and shading to create a three-dimensional effect shows the extraordinary artistry and talent for which the tapestry works was famous. The artistry of the pieces mimicked techniques and stylistic elements that were found in paintings and other art mediums of the time.
The pinks, greens, blues, and neutrals of this ancient garden may reference the story of Poseidon. Even though the familiar trident is not present, other features of the face and water streaming forth from the figure’s mouth resemble other depictions of Poseidon in Rococo art. The artist created cracks in the stonework in this overgrown garden, giving the tapestry a sense of the passage of time as if it were some abandoned place that time has forgotten.
Remaining Beauvais tapestries are highly collectible, and this one is an exceptional example. The Beauvais Manufactory was a private enterprise, but it was funded by the state, making this piece an important historical work, too. These tapestries were created for lavish dining halls, corridors, and reception rooms of the nobility. Many times, you can find depictions of these tapestries in Rococo paintings as a part of the scenery. This antique French tapestry would be a beautiful piece for a historic home to recreate the opulence of this period in history. With so few surviving pieces in existence, this is a rare opportunity to own one for your home.