Tapestry with scenes of the Passion
Tournai (Belgium)
about 1445-1455
Wool, silk ; 424 x 911 cm
Inv. 3644

Beginning in the 14th century, the episcopal city of Tournai became an important art centre. Its production of tapestries grew considerably in the 15th century. Altough archival sources do not contain the name of any tapestry designer, important dealer-weavers are documented, like Pasquier Grenier, who provided many series to Phillip the Good, Duke of Burgundy.

Tournai tapestries are characterized by dense compositions and a high horizon line. This monumental work, more than nine metres wide, was made there about 1445-1455. Impressive groups of figures illustrate, side by side, carrying the cross, the Crucifixion and the Resurrection. There is no real separation between the episodes. Shrubbery, hills and fine bouquets of flowers border the sides and lower edge of the tapestry.

Discover this masterpiece on the online museum catalogue Carmentis and in the book Masterpieces of the Cinquantenaire Museum.