Tamat expo

This chasuble, entirely embroidered with gold and silver thread, is part of a set of 13 pieces, called the “Cotrel ornament”, used for the most prestigious services in Tournai Cathedral. 

The back of the chasuble is structured by an embroidered band and delimited by braids drawing a cross, called “orphreys”. In the centre we can distinguish a radiant dove of the Holy Spirit, a symbolic motif frequently found in religious iconography of the period. 

The abundant ornamentation is characteristic of the productions of the Dormal-Ponce workshop. The acanthus is one of the workshop’s key motifs. Here, it is arranged in elegant scrolls that wrap around the entire height of the orphrey. The embroiderers have the habit of sprinkling the acanthus scrolls with flowers, whose species can sometimes be recognised, such as peonies or tulips. Often grains can be found among the flowers, which are another trademark of the workshop. 

Finally, on either side of the orphrey, the bottom of the chasuble is made up of thick strips or bands drawing curves interrupted by bends and changing direction. These strips, another characteristic motif of the workshop, impart a subtle and musical rhythm to the composition. Their surface is here delicately decorated with a net of flowers. 

The influence of French fashion can be seen in the elegant and refined ornamentation of this chasuble, designed between 1730 and 1734. It is characteristic of the production of the Dormal-Ponce workshop in the 1730s.