Catalogue of the Retrospective Loan Exhibition of European Tapestries

Catalogue of the Retrospective Loan Exhibition of European Tapestries

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Excerpt from Catalogue of the Retrospective Loan Exhibition of European Tapestries

From the xivth to the end of the xvth century was the Gothic period. Then tapestry was at its greatest height. More of the requisites of its design were met, and met more adequately and more naturally, than by any subsequent school of designers or any looms. As illustration, the tapestry of the Gothic period is inter esting, Vivid, and provocative. The stories and episodes that it presents were, to be sure, all part of the mental content of the audience, so that they comprehended them more immediately than we; but even without the literary background we follow them readily, so adequate is their delineation. Moreover, they carry success fully almost every narrative mood - humor, romance, lyricism, excitement, pathos, and pure adventure - and, except in the traditional religious scenes, they wisely eschew such tenser dramatic attitudes as a momentous climax, long-sustained suspense, or profound tragedy. Finally, when they, had a good tale to tell, the Gothic designers rendered their episodes With a fullness of incident and a vivacity of detail never again equaled.

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