THE LADY AND THE UNI­CORN

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The mag­nif­i­cent me­dieval art of “The lady and the uni­corn” tapestry se­ries is now on show at the Art Gallery of New South Wales. On loan from the Musée de Cluny – Musée na­tional du Moyen Âge, Paris, “The lady and the uni­corn” is of­ten re­ferred to as the ‘Mona Lisa of the Mid­dle Ages’. Wo­ven in wool and silk to a French de­sign, the se­ries com­prises six en­tranc­ing works that to­gether, due to their sig­nif­i­cant scale, span over 20 me­tres in length. Five of the ta­pes­tries de­pict the five senses, with a sixth rep­re­sent­ing the heart, or un­der­stand­ing. Within the ta­pes­tries a lady flanked by a lion and a uni­corn is sur­rounded by a fan­tas­ti­cal world of an­i­mals, trees and flow­ers.

Un­til 24 June, Art Gallery of NSW, Art Gallery Road, The Do­main, Syd­ney. 9225 1700. art­gallery.nsw.gov.au

Photo © RMN-GP / M Ur­tado.

‘Hear­ing’ c1500, from ‘The lady and the uni­corn’ se­ries wool and silk, 369 x 290 cm. Musée de Cluny – Musée na­tional du Moyen Âge, Paris.

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