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VRA Core 4 Example 10: Tapestry series
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Collection record [refid 24]
agent unknown (Netherlandish tapestry weaver)
culturalContext French Flemish Netherlandish
date ca. 1495-1505 (creation)
description As early as the seventeenth century, the Unicorn Tapestries were documented as having been displayed as a group. Surely they were collected and exhibited together because together they illustrate the pursuit of the elusive unicorn completely, despite the likelihood that the seven individual hangings may come from two or more sets of tapestries. Little is known about their early history, though the seven hangings are thought to have been designed in Paris and woven in Brussels (then part of the Netherlands) between 1495-1505. They include the depiction of 101 species of plants, of which over 85 have been identified. The vibrant colors still evident today were produced with three dye plants: weld (yellow), madder (red), and woad (blue). The earliest document listing the seven tapestries is a 1680 inventory that details the possessions in the Paris residence of François VI de La Rochefoucauld. They were purchased from the Rochefoucauld family by John D. Rockefeller.
Metropolitan Museum of Art [website]; (accessed 5/29/2009) [description source]
location Metropolitan Museum of Art; The Cloisters (New York, New York, United States)
material wool; metallic threads; silk
source Core 4 Sample Database (VCat)
stylePeriod Medieval
subject allegorical; animals; cycles or series; decorative arts; literary or legendary; plants; Animals, Mythical; Hunting in art; Unicorns; botanical studies; flowery mead; flowery mede; Mediaeval gardens; Middle Ages
technique tapestry (process)
title The Hunt of the Unicorn [cited, true, en]
Unicorn Tapestries [series] [repository, false, en]
worktype furnishings; wall hangings; tapestries
Image record [refid 127]
measurements 18 MB
relation [imageOf 24, Core 4 Sample Database (VCat)]
rights undetermined
source VRA Data Standards Committee, Core 4 Sample Records [href]
Metropolitan Museum of Art [website]; [source of image]
subject Art museums; exhibitions; gallery; stained glass windows; beamed ceiling
technique digital imaging
title Installation view of the Unicorn Tapestries at The Cloisters
worktype digital image
Last modified OCtober 13, 2014