CODART, Dutch and Flemish art in museums worldwide

Raphael. Gold & Silk

26 September 2023 - 14 January 2024

Raphael. Gold & Silk

Web Exhibition: 26 September 2023 - 14 January 2024

The Kunsthistorisches Museum will dedicate its large 2023 autumn show to a medium that cannot be overlooked in the culture of representation and celebration of the Renaissance: monumental tapestries. Setting out from wall hangings following designs by Raphael, the exhibition sketches out the development of tapestry art over the course of the sixteenth century and gives an insight into the exceptional collection of tapestries at the Kunsthistorisches Museum, which cannot be on show permanently for conservation reasons.

The most qualitative products were made of fine silk and valuable precious metal threads in Brussels. This is where Pope Leo X (1475–1521) also commissioned an Apostles series intended for the Sistine Chapel in Rome. The designs, which brought about a revolution of style in Flemish tapestry design, were made by the popular Italian artist Raffaello Santi, called Raphael (1483–1520). His idealized image of the human form and the highly expressive gestures of his figures as well as the harmony inherent to his works, landscapes with convincing perspective and classical architecture would shape tapestry designs for the following decades.

The highlights of the show include, among others, a seven-part series of the Deadly Sins following designs by the eminent tapestry designer Pieter Coecke van Aelst (1502–1550). The series has not been on view in Vienna in its entirety since 1981.

See the special exhibition website for more information.