Tapestry: Don Quichotte guéri de sa folie par la sagesse, from L'Histoire de don Quichotte Series

Object Details


Tapestry: Don Quichotte guéri de sa folie par la sagesse, from L'Histoire de don Quichotte Series


Woven at the Royal Factory of Furniture to the Crown at the Gobelins Manufactory (French, founded 1662 - present)
under the direction of Michel Audran (French, 1701 - 1771)
and his son Jean Audran fils (French, died 1794, active Gobelin Manufactory 1771 - 1794)
after the painting by Charles-Antoine Coypel (French, 1694 - 1752)
the alentours were designed in collaboration by Claude Audran III (French, before 1658 - 1734)
Jean-Baptiste Belin de Fontenay fils (French, 1668 - 1730)
Alexandre-François Desportes (French, 1661 - 1743)
and Valande




Gobelins, France (Place created)




Silk and wool


370.8 × 386.1 cm (146 × 152 in.)

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The tapestry designer based his depiction of an episode from Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra's enormously popular romance, The Story of Don Quixote, on a painting by Charles-Antoine Coypel. He placed Don Quixote and his companion Sancho in a room furnished with a bed and two chairs. Don Quixote sleeps in one of the chairs, dreaming of Minerva, goddess of wisdom, who approaches in a cloud with her left arm extended to dispel his madness. Sancho, standing next to his master, gazes in a trance at the figure of Folly, who carries in her right hand a model of a castle and in her left a pole with a fool's cap.

Around the central scene, the tapestry also features an elaborate surrounding decoration known as the alentours. Amid the garlands of flowers and fruit, a monkey plays on each side. The monkey on the right dangles a long lance in the direction of the three sheep below, who scatter. In the opposite corner amid a pile of books, a spotted spaniel points at the other monkey above. The tapestry's title is woven in yellow thread in the bottom center.

The surrounds for this tapestry were designed by Jean-Baptiste Belin de Fontenay, fils, Claude Audran III, Alexandre François Desportes, and Maurice Jacques. It was woven in Michel Audran's workshop, assisted by his son, Jean Audran, fils.

1773 - 1786

French Crown, Manufacture Royale des Meubles de la Couronne (Paris, France)


King Louis XVI of France, French, 1754 - 1793, given to Albert and Marie-Christine, duke and duchess of Saxe-Teschen, on August 20, 1786.

1786 - 1822

Albert, duke of Saxe-Teschen and Joint Governor of the Austrian Netherlands, German, 1738 - 1822, and installed in the Tarockisches Haus (subsequently called the Albertina), Vienna, by 1820.


and Marie-Christine, duchess of Saxe-Teschen and Joint Governor of the Austrian Netherlands, Austrian, 1742 - 1792, (sister of Marie-Antoinette, Queen of France)

1822 - 1847

Karl Ludwig Johann Joseph Lorenz, duke of Teschen, German, 1771 - 1847

1847 - 1895

Albrecht Friedrich Rudolph, duke of Teschen, German, 1817 - 1895

1895 - 1936

Friedrich Maria Albrecht Wilhelm Karl, duke of Teschen, German, 1856-1936 (Schloss Haltburn, Burgenland, Austria; London, England), removed by him to London, 1936.


Alice Bucher (Lucerne, Switzerland) [unsold, Sotheby's, London, December 8, 1967, lot 1]

1981 - 1982

Roland Romer (Zurich, Switzerland) [sold, Sotheby's, Monaco, June 14, 1982, no. 571, to the J. Paul Getty Museum]

The Story of Don Quixote by Charles-Antoine Coypel, Paintings, Prints, and Tapestries (February 25 to May 17, 2015) (28)
  • The Frick Collection (New York), February 24 to May 17, 2015

Fenaille, Maurice. Etat général des tapisseries de la Manufacture des Gobelins (Paris, 1903) vol. 3, pp. 237 ff.

Göbel, H. Die Wandteppiche, vol. 2 (Leipzig: 1928) part 1, p. 163.

"Aus dem kunsthandel." Alte und Moderne Kunst 97 (March/April 1968) p. 55, no. 97.

Bremer-David, Charissa. "Set of Four Tapestries." The J. Paul Getty Museum Journal 11 (1983) pp. 60-66.

Standen, Edith A. European Post-Medieval Tapestries and Related Hangings in the Metropolitan Museum of Art, 2 vols. (New York: Metropolitan Museum of Art, 1985) vol 1, pp. 369-75.

Sassoon, Adrian, and Gillian Wilson. Decorative Arts: A Handbook of the Collection of the J. Paul Getty Museum (Malibu: J. Paul Getty Museum, 1986) pp. 104-05, no. 223.

Bremer-David, Charissa et al. Decorative Arts: An Illustrated Summary Catalogue of the Collections of the J. Paul Getty Museum (Malibu: J. Paul Getty Museum, 1993) pp. 175-76, no. 300.

Forti-Grazzini, N. Il patrimonio artistico del Quirinale: Gli Arazzi (Rome, 1994) vol. 2, pp. 392-415, nos. 143-49.

Bremer-David, Charissa. French Tapestries and Textiles in the J. Paul Getty Museum (Los Angeles: J. Paul Getty Museum, 1997) pp. 40-53, no. 6.

Wilson, Gillian, and Catherine Hess. Summary Catalogue of European Decorative Arts in the J. Paul Getty Museum (Los Angeles: J. Paul Getty Museum, 2001) pp. 155-56, no. 308.

Don Quichotte und Ragotin: zwei komische Helden in den preussischen Koenigsschossern, exh. cat. (Berlin: Stiftung Preussische Schloesser und Garten Berlin-Brandenburg, 2004), notes 1 and 4 on p. 177.

Benedik, Christian. The Albertina, The Palais and the Habsburg State Rooms (Vienna, Christian Brandstaetter Verlag, 2008). pp. 62-63 (ills.) and note 34 on p. 265.

Charlotte Vignon, Coypel's Don Quixote Tapestries: Illustrating a Spanish Novel in Eighteenth-Century France, exh. cat. (The Frick Collection, 2015) no. 28, pp. 84-85 (ills.).