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Above: Hopital St Jean exhibition room; right: above and below views of Le Chant du Monde The Famous Tapestries of Angers The chateau, with its 17 duo-tone towers, is a great place to start, one of the best preserved fortresses of its era in France. Housed in a purpose-built gallery, the tapestry is one of the oldest in France, it has survived from the 14th century, second only to the Bayeux Tapestry. It was commissioned for Duke Louis I of Anjou, and probably made in Paris over a period of ten years. It is, without doubt, a splendid example of tapestry work, but, if I’m being honest, I believe it is outdone in terms of splendour by the modern version, Le Chant du Monde, a series of ten tapestries that represent the crowning achievement of artist Jean Lurçat (1892-1966) housed on the north side of the river, in the Hopital Saint-Jean, itself a masterpiece of Plantagenet Gothic architecture. Le Chant du Monde is both a poetic and symbolic vision of the world in which the artists defines Man’s place within the universe. City Life The centre of mainstream action focuses on place du Ralliement, dominatedby the splendid façade of its Grand Theatre, and flanked by shops and restaurants. Nearby the cathedral, dedicated to St-Maurice, contains superb stained glass windows reminiscent of those at Chartres, and is another example of Gothic architecture bestowed by the Plantagenet dynasty.
And much, much more
Our Contributors Karen Booth-Burns
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