Tournai Cathedral introduces two exhibitions to celebrate its 850 years of history.
Belgium – Louvain (Thursday 08/10/2021 2:00 PM, Gaudium Press) The Belgian Cathedral of Tournai offers the public a glimpse of its artistic treasures through two exhibitions showcasing the richness of the vestments and textile production of centuries past.
The first display, “Dressing for Celebration: the richness of Tournai Cathedral textiles,” is currently at the Museum of Tapestry and Textile Arts (TAMAT) until November 28.
Michel-Amand Jacques, administrator of the association “The Friends of Tournai Cathedral,” notes that the exhibition focuses on pieces produced by the Cathedral
18th-century embroidery workshop. The Dormal-Ponce atelier produced numerous vestments and embroidery of excellent quality. Currently, Tournai Cathedral has two complete sets of ornaments dating from the period.
In addition to these ornaments, thanks to a detailed study of the pieces made by the Dormal-Ponce atelier, it has been possible to reconstruct much of the atelier’s work. The atelier was responsible for the liturgy of the great abbeys and churches of the 19th century. Along with these works of sewing art, sacred objects and small information panels are also part of the display, explaining the liturgical developments in the Ancien Regime.
“The events are a joint initiative between the Friends of Tournai Cathedral, the TAMAT Museum and the Catholic University of Louvain, developed after years of work by the Friends of Tournai Cathedral and the History Department of the Catholic University of Louvain,” Jacques explained.
A second exhibition will be open to the public until January 16 at the Museum of Fine Arts.
It features works of tapestry art consisting of four ornamental carpets dating from the 16th century.
The tapestries, ten in total, were a gift from the Bishop of Tournai and were designed to adorn the Cathedral’s presbytery during the principal liturgical feasts of the year: Easter, Christmas, Pentecost and the Feast of All Saints.
The ornamental carpets, made in Brussels, are striking due to their size -between 6 and 7 meters long- and their quality. They represent the story of Joseph of Egypt. Currently, only four are part of the Tournai Cathedral. The other six pieces composing the collection are scattered around European museums.
Unfortunately, out of all the works on display, only one is complete: the one depicting the episode of the bloody tunic. According to the Friends of Tournai Cathedral, intensive restoration work is underway to complete all the other pieces. (FM)
With information from CathoBel
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Tournai Cathedral in Belgium proposes two exhibitions to celebrate its 850 years of history
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