ANNE WANNER'S Textiles in History   /  lisbon 2003, summaries

  CIETA general assembly - Lisbon - 29, 30 September, 1 and 2 October 2003
  summaries of embroidery papers:  


Danièle Denise, Fontainebleau, France: Monday 29th September
A Set of Furniture Decorated with Chinoiserie Embroidery at the Château of Fontainebleau
  Ever since the Second Empire (1852-1870), a set of furniture comprising a sofa, six armchairs, six chairs and one lambrequin has been housed at the Château of Fontainebleau National Museum. The seat furniture, made in the 19th century, is in carved and gilded wood. The armchairs have canvas-work covers from the era of Louis XIV (1643-1715), of the "classic" kind with mythological, allegorical or pastoral subjects, adapted to the shape of the seat. The sofa and the chairs, on the other hand, as well as the lambrequin, were made or re-upholstered with early 18th century canvas-work, but decorated with "Chinese" figures, exotic flowers and fantastic animals, cut out of pre-existent canvas-work or canvas-work fragments. The presentation of this set of furniture will question the origin of this unconventional iconography.


Teresa Alarcao, Lisbon, Portugal: Tuesday 30th September
Episcopal Vestments Discovered in a 14th Century Sarcophagus
  When the vaulted tomb of Archbishop D. Gonçalo Pereira (+1348) was opened, together with the body was found a collection of well-preserved liturgical ornaments. A 13th - 14th century embroidered mitre, with iconographic representations and some opus anglicanum gloves are at the Abegg Foundation for conservation.
Other items including some textile samples were also retrieved, notably an Italian silk of oriental inspiration.
This confirms the presence in Portugal of high quality textiles and embroideries of diverse origin. The photographic documentation available enables the type of funeral paraments employed to be evaluated.


Maria João Ferreira, Carnaxide, Portugal: Tuesday 30th September
Sino-Portuguese Embroidery - a Paradigm of Artistic and Cultural Exchanges between East and West
  Although the existence of a considerable number of Sino-Portuguese embroideries in Portugal has been acknowledged, they have been habitually ignored as a textile type, thus hindering the study and understanding of this kind of textile production.
Found in the context of Portuguese discoveries as a consequence of connections between Lusitanians and Chinese, Sino-Portuguese embroideries compel recognition as an extraordinary and interesting group, due to their accumulation of wide-ranging and diverse references, linking the Oriental and Occidental poles af civilization.
Associated with massive production as from the 16th century, these embroideries, as will be demonstrated through the analysis of some examples, represent a synopsis of the interpenetration of cultures observable in different domains, not only in the type of production, such as the materials and the techniques employed, but also as regards their iconography and approach to plasticity bringing into tune two different artistic worlds.


Barbara Karl, Vienna, Austria: Tuesday 30th September
Indo-Portuguese Textiles of the 16th and 17th Centuries
  During the 16th and parts of the 17th century the Portuguese controlled vast trading sectors between Brazil and Japan. On their ships travelled not only merchandise, but also ideas, traditions and forms. Their influence on the arts of these widespread places cannot be denied. This vivid interchange led to an accumulation of different styles. Investigating the early collections, Kunstkammern, one often finds large, high quality textiles. They are evidence of an exchange between East and West and are of eminent importance from a stylistical, technical and historical point of view. Especially in the light of the current phenomenon of globalization, art linked to European expansion can be regarded with special and topical interest.


Teresa Pacheco Pereira, Lisbon, Portugal:: Tuesday 30th September
Two Counterpanes from the National Museum of ancient Art
  The National Museum has recently acquired two Indo-Portuguese counterpanes. They are both worked with monochrome embroidery, one in yellow and the other in purple silk.
The study of these two items takes as its point of reference a group of Bengali tussah silk embroideries and will attempt to analyse the structural composition, the decorative themes and the similarities and differences between the counterpanes and this other group of textiles.


Maria Cristina Soares de Oliveira, Lisbon, Portugal: Tuesday 30th September
The Garments of Nossa Senhora of Oliveira
  This project aims to pursue historical, decorative and technical research (textile fibres, dyes, metallic alloys) concerning the garments of the 18th century life-size sculpture Holy Mother of Oliveira displayed on the high altar of the Collegiate Church Holy Mother of Oliveira in Guimarães.
The clothing on the statue comprises a cloak, a bodice and a skirt decorated with exotic flowers in silk and metallic elements embroidered onto a silk fabric with metallic thread. Its origin has not yet been fully determined, but in spite of the Oriental design it may be Portuguese.
The work here presented is in progress during the years 2002/03 at the Textiles Department of the Portuguese Institute of Conservation and Restoration in Lisbon within the broad framework of the Projecto Operacional da Cultura (POC).
An interventive treatment will be carried out enabling the display of the garments in a museum setting.


Caroline Vogt, Bern, Switzerland: Wednesday 1st October
The Mitre of Archbishop D. Gonçalo Pereira (+1349) of Braga, Portugal - An Early Example of opus anglicanum.
  In the course of restoration work in the Cathedral of Braga during the 1990's the sarcophagus of Archbishop D. Gonçalo Pereira (+1349) in the Chapel of Nossa-Senhora da Gloria was opened. The bishop had been interred with full ornaments, but only the mitre and the gloves were removed from the sarcophagus, along with some other textile samples. The mitre belongs to a group of similar mitres conserved in museums and treasuries all over Europe. It dates from the end of the 12th century and is an example of opus anglicanum. It is preserved in its entirety, but in a very fragile state of conservation.


Maria-Anne Privat-Savigny, Ecouen, France: Wednesday 1st October
A Raised Work Embroidered Panel from the Early 17th Century
  The Musée national de la Renaissance at Ecouen possesses a raised-work embroidered panel representing several events in the story of Adam and Eve. Its "dreadful taste" was deplored by E. Lefébure in 1877. This panel raises two main questions. Firstly, as to its purpose: is it, as Louis de Farcy suggests, from the interior of en ebony cabinet ? Secondly, as to its origin: datable to the beginning of the 17th century, was this embroidery produced in Flanders, as V. Woldbye believes, or is it possible that, with the Flemish influence then current in Paris, it could have been embroidered there by Flemish embroiderers ?

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