"What is lovely never dies, but passes into other loveliness."
-Thomas Bailey Aldrich
Throughout the 17th and 18th century many memorable works of art were created. There is one piece of art that stands out they are the Gobelins. Gobelins are luxurious tapestries made out many fine threads. These tapestries hung on the walls of many great castles, homes, and prominent buildings. They have inspired generations of artists to make their creations as beautiful, if not equally beautiful. In the paragraphs that follow there will be explanations of how the Gobelin tapestries came to be, how they were made, and their influence on the world.
The Gobelin tapestry industry was created in the "mid-15th century, when Jean Gobelin and Philbert Gobelin set up a dye works on the outskirts of Paris(Microsoft Encarta)." They set the basis of what would become the greatest industry to grace France.
In the 17th century King Henry IV made the Gobelin dye works into a tapestry industry. This industry became so distinguished that Colbert took it over in 1662. The Gobelin factory came to known as the "Manufacture royale des meubles de la Couronne, and, as this implies, it was planned to produce everything necessary to the furnishing of the royal palace(Blunt 194)." In 1663 Colbert appointed Lebrun as the director of this industry. Under his command he created a business that did everything from painting to marbling.
Lebrun also set up a school to learn the trade. This school consisted of four stages. The four stages were the "elementary level, advanced level, academy and tapestry school(Weigert 19)." Along with the school for the creation of Gobelins, they offered a free drawing school. Due to the intense training that was given, "an outpouring of magnificent hangings, upholstery, and furniture in a richly ornate, baroque style(Microsoft Encarta)" were created. To ensure that the industry stayed successful "doctrines of Colbert and Lebrun became virtually dogma and no independent artist or style appeared, either in or outside Paris, till after Colbert's death in 1683(Bazin 101)." Despite its closing from 1694 to 1699, financial difficulties of the Crown. It reopened and only continued to make tapestries, but it slowed down during the French Revolution. Even thought the styles changed the factory was able to acquire "Savonnerie rug works, founded in 1627. It is now officially called the Manufacture Nationale de Gobelins(Microsoft Encarta)."
Now that you have learned the history of the Gobelin industry, I is only natural to learn how they were made. The weavers used two different techniques. These two techniques were high and low warp. High-warp meant that the "tapestry the warp is stretched vertically in the loom; in low-warp tapestry it is horizontal(Weigert 13)."
The Gobelins were neat and regular. They look as if they were made by a machine. They called the threads they used warp. Warp was...