The Tapestry of Gods (1760)
Tapestry after Claude Audran, Gobelins .
These two tapestries represent Juno and Venus.
Juno is seated on a throne surrounded by Putti at the center of a flower arrangement overlooking a crown.
On borders, there are two peacocks, symbol of the queen of the gods. Venus is carried by a cloud accompanied by his son Cupid. Her attribute is the dove. The cardboard was called initially “The new doors arabesques of the gods ” and was part of the series of 4 seasons. Venus represents spring, Ceres represents summer, Bacchus fall, and finally Saturn winter.
In addition, this series also represents the series of four elements, that is to say Juno represents air, Diane earth, the sea Neptune and Jupiter fire.
The series was commissioned by the superintendent of the royal buildings: Jules Hardouin Mansart.
Claude Audran, the artist, was the Professor of Watteau. At the same time, he was also called to decorate the rooms of the Duke of Orleans in Meudon. He painted the menagerie and room of Princess of Conti at Versailles. It is interesting to note that Audran does not appear in the inventory of the royal accounts until 1699. However, he received many commissions.
Desportes was a longtime friend and they shared many projects together because they were complementary. Indeed, Desportes was specialized in drawing animals.
The first tapestry of the series was complete in January 1701 in the studio of Dominique Cross. The scenes seem to be among the longest to produce at Goblins as they were woven until 1789 with a variety of stunning colors and a mixture of precious materials such as silver and gold threads.
There were only 8 editions noted in the official archives of the workshop.
Dimensions: 200 x 260 cm
Provenance: Private Collection.
Composition: Tapestry sewn silk, wool and son of silver metal.