Tapestry: Jupiter transformé en Diane pour surprendre Callisto avec Vertumne et Pomone, from Les Tentures de François Boucher Series

Object Details

Title:

Tapestry: Jupiter transformé en Diane pour surprendre Callisto avec Vertumne et Pomone, from Les Tentures de François Boucher Series

Artist/Maker(s):

After painting by François Boucher (French, 1703 - 1770)

and after designs by Maurice Jacques (French, about 1712 - 1784)

and after designs by Louis Tessier (French, about 1719 - 1781)

and Jacques Neilson (British, Scottish, about 1718 - 1788)

Gobelins Manufactory (French, founded 1662 - present)

Culture:

French

Place(s):

France (Place created)

Date:

about 1775 - 1778

Medium:

Wool and silk

Dimensions:

383.5 x 624.8 cm (151 x 246 in.)

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This tapestry contains two scenes taken from Ovid's Metamorphoses. At first glance, both scenes appear to show two female lovers in a wooded landscape. But the goddess of the hunt on the left actually represents the god Jupiter, who has taken the form of Diana in order to seduce one of her followers. The eagle with thunderbolts in its claws, a symbol of Jupiter, is a clue to his presence.

On the right, an old woman in heavy robes is really Vertumnus, the god of orchards, disguised in order to enter the garden of Pomona, the young goddess of gardens. Identified by her attributes of fruit, flowers, and a watering can, she suspects nothing and dreamily listens to Vertumnus, who sits beside her.

Imitating paintings, these roundels are set in oval frames, with the artist François Boucher's signature woven into the right scene. A decorative setting known as an alentours surrounds the two simulated paintings. As in the other tapestries in this set, thick garlands of flowers, exotic birds, and metalwork vases fill this border. Musical and hunting trophies hang beneath each roundel.

The tapestry is based on designs by Maurice Jacques, Louis Tessier, and Jacques Neilson.

Provenance
- 1782

King Louis XVI of France, French, 1754 - 1793, gifted to Grand Duke Paul Petrovitch and Grand Duchess Maria Feodorovna of Russia in 1782.

1782 - 1801

Grand Duke Paul Petrovitch of Russia, later Czar Paul I, 1754 - 1801

and Grand Duchess Maria Feodorovna of Russia, 1759 - 1828 (hung at the Palace of Pavlovsk, near St. Petersburg, Russia), by inheritance within the Russian Imperial Collection.

1801 - 1917

Russian Imperial Collection (Palace of Pavlovsk, near St. Petersburg, Russia), nationalized during the Russian Revolution.

after 1917 - 1931

Soviet government, sold, 1931.

Duveen Brothers, Inc. (New York City, New York)

- 1971

Norton Simon, American, 1907 - 1993 [sold, Parke-Bernet, New York, May 8, 1971, lot 233, to the J. Paul Getty Museum]

Exhibitions
Great Periods of Tapestry (February 1961)
  • Allentown Art Museum, (Allentown), February to February, 1961
War and Peace, A German Empress at the Castle of Pavlovsk (November 9, 2001 to February 10, 2002) (186; pp. 322-323)
  • Haus der Kunst (Munich), November 9, 2001 to February 10, 2002