Associate Research Curator, Clare Elliott discusses The Striped Horse, a tapestry woven at the Gobelins Manufactory in Paris, the official supplier of textiles to the French royal family starting in 1663. Based on preliminary designs by Dutch artists Albert Eckhout and Frans Post, the hanging is from “The Old Indies” series, which depicted the flora, fauna, and people that inhabited the Dutch-controlled territories of what is now Brazil in the 17th and 18th centuries. Drawn from sketches made while Eckhout and Proust were traveling in South America, the original designs were elaborated by French artists with no firsthand knowledge of the Americas. The combination of accurately observed New World wildlife alongside animals foreign to the Americas, like the zebra and rhinoceros, creates a curious blend of truth and fantasy. Join us to learn more about this three-hundred-year-old work, a highlight from the collection that is seldom on view due to the light-sensitive nature of its media.
Held on Fridays for a small group, Member Noontime Talks make exhibitions more intimate and reveal the collection as never before. To sign up, please RSVP to firstname.lastname@example.org. If you are not currently a Menil Member, you can learn more and join here.