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TAMAT, Museum of Tapestry, Walls Arts and Textile Arts

Photos M71065.JPGInaugurated in June 1990, the Museum of Tapestry and Textile Arts is located in a former mansion of Neo-Classic style, accredited to the talents of the architect Bruno RENARD. This museum is not only the central point of permanent collections and temporary exhibitions, but also a place of work where the `licièresZ (textile artists) and restorers carry out their skills in the creation of tapestry cards or the restoration of textile art works. The Museum also has a research and experimentation center in contemporary textile art in its broadest sense. Tournai has always been a favoured site for tapestry. Tapestry art was at its height during the 15th century. In those days more than 200 textile artists worked in the studios of the City, the production of which was exported in the whole of Europe. The tapestries of the Tournai region dating from the 15th and 16th centuries are one of the highlights of the Museum. These tapestries show off the brilliance of their colors and the richness of their materials in vibrant, even if sometimes mystifying, story-telling scenes. Personages with expressive facial features portray the refinement of the era with their rich trappings, brocaded garments and lustrous armours. After a long period of decline, the art of tapestry was revived in Tournai during the 20th century. This innovative surge resulted in the opening of this animated museum dedicated exclusively to ancient and modern tapestry. Indeed, the Museum is also dedicated to the renewal of the art of tapestry, since the first creations of the `Force MuralesZ (Mural Power) group in the 1940s to the works of this past decade. The best creators rub elbows, illustrating the variations and diverse contemporary trends in the specialty of tapestry, textile and structure. The Museum offers an evolutional panorama, presenting in the lines of workmanship of tapestry, textile and structure, in the French community, antique tapestry collections of the city of Tournai, contemporary creations and works of textile art of the French community of the Hainaut Province, and of the Foundation of Tapestry and Textile Arts, as well as temporary deposits from artists. A former mansion of Neo-Classic style, accredited to the talents of Bruno Renard, an architect of Tournai. The Foundation's department is located on the 2nd and 3rd floors of the building.
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