June 4, 2008

Corners of my home

The Lady And The Unicorn, Cluny Museum Paris
A copy I bought

When I visited France for the first time in 1993, I fell in love with all the tapestries that were in all of the Chateaux that we toured through. At the time we couldn't really afford to buy replicas that were for sale in many of the museums and shops. A lot of them are produced by machine,but in the traditional way, mostly in Belgium. You can buy fairly inexpensive ones made out of cotton and not loomed on a machine,but printed. The one pictured above is my favorite and has a very mysterious story attached to it. The original is in the Cluny Museum in Paris, along with the other five. I loved that museum,mainly because of all the stone work inside and how all the tapestries looked so gorgeous hung on the bare stone walls. If you ever go to Paris, you must go to this museum! There are six large tapestries in a darkly lit room that represent,they think, the five senses. The last one,"The lady and the Unicorn," is the one that has a bit of mystery to it. The other five clearly show imagery that leads art historians to believe their theories. But the sixth isn't as cut and dry. There was a book written a few years back by Tracy Chevalier,and it is called, "The Lady and The Unicorn." She takes a lot of liberties with the theories, but it makes for a fun read.
I knew I had to have one of the tapestries of that sixth one. The one that I have was on the pricey side given that it is %100 wool and machine loomed, not printed. There is a really cool tag on the back side of it showing who made it etc. This is one of my favorite things that we bought in France. Thought I'd share it, and maybe spark a bit of interest in the story behind the tapestries. Enjoy!


  1. Hi Elizabeth!
    Where do you have the tapestry and how large is it? Loved reading about it. Thanks for sharing!


  2. see you know more about my country that I do !!!!
    I can't do tapisseries, I'm allergic to dust -- e.g. all my curtains need to be washable ... etc....