image & insights from Dirk Holger

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Image reproduced courtesy of  Harvard University Art Museum, Cambridge, MA. (Copyright arrangements by DH.)

HERE is the COPTIC  Icon of St.Theodore, probably not a ‘selfie’, but an impressive way to have a portrait w o v e n  (and not painted), see the difference in the texture when blown up….  —Dirk

Shown above is one of 3 pages on Coptic weavings in Dirk’s book, To Weave or Not to Weave: a Basic Tapestry Book for the Lay Person,  published by Schiffer Books of Atglen, PA, expected publication in mid-2015, from the text:

“COPTIC WEAVING ( I avoid the term ‘tapestry’ here, although these parts of tunics and/or curtains are executed in the tapestry weaving technique.) This superb fragment is an important sample of the 6th century Coptic art, when the figure and other motifs are defined by distinct outlines, while subtly shaded yarns are blended and interwoven to evoke volume, surface modeling, and texture. There comes only one term to mind to describe the artistic expression of this magnificent textile: SOLEMNITY.”

Note:   On a previous page I explain: ‘Coptic’, from Greek coptos for aegyptos, a spoonerism of the term, and on the next page I show (b/w) the “two Dominican nuns weaving on a small high-warp loom” from a 14th century tapestry from Bamberg, Germany, showing the “weaving in a weaving”…. And on the next page comes the earliest European tapestry, from the 11th century, Cologne, Germany. It is a surprise to many who are not experts that the first European tapestries are German and not Flemish or French…. The next ones are the dossals from Halberstadt Cathedral of the 12th century!—DH, ed. MS
Dirk’s next project:
The Secret of the ‘Lady with the Lion and 
the Unicorn’: Revealed!   … “and here I have the rights by Mr.Arnaud who found out who she is by looking at the details (the common title Lady with Unicorn is misleading, there is always a lion on each panel, hinting at the coat of arms of a country in Europe which is an island…) and the initials of the mysterious lady (a princess and a queen) are written atop of the tent in the sixth panel….etc…. A hidden, forbidden love triangle comes out of the “depth of time” to enlighten and amuse us today…. The truth could not be openly told in the early 16th century (not: 15th century as most ‘experts’ assumed…) because…..just wait and read: it is indeed a sensational finding!”—Dirk Holger

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