Palatial Panels Tapestry
The word tapestry is now widely used to describe a range of textiles, including needlepoint but historically and technically it designates a figurative weft-faced textile woven by hand on a loom.
Our six panels are palatial «tapestry» panels (entre-fenêtre), of a distinctive yellow (à fond jaune or tabac d'Espagne) ground of woven silk and gilt-metal-wrapped silk with a design worked in embroidery needlepoint, petit point and cross stitch.
The strictly symmetrical organization of the decor of classical grotesques inspiration is centred by an allegorical representation of deities: Minerva, Ceres, Diana-Selene, Apollo with headdress attributes: helmet, ear of corn, moon crescent, sun rays.
These divinities - which might represent disciplines such as astronomy, agriculture , etc. - are emerging from open foliage under a canopy and initials below.
The panels are edged by strapwork and trails of acanthus entwined foliate motifs with tools suspended by blue tied ribbon:
3 panels with ewers and 3 with architectural trophies such as set square, compass, brush, paper roll and plumb-bob.
France, second half 19th century.
79.5 cm x 52 cm (31" 1/4 x 20" 1/2) each panel.
Provenance: Estate Palais Toussoun in Bacos, Alexandria, Egypt, 1955.