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Smithsonian Associates - Entertaining, Informative, Eclectic, Insightful

The Unicorn Tapestries: At the Water's Edge

Daytime Lecture/Seminar

Wednesday, May 26, 2021 - 12:00 p.m. to 1:30 p.m. ET
Code: 1J0094
Select Your Tickets
$20 - Member
$25 - Non-Member

The Unicorn Rests in a Garden (from the Unicorn Tapestries), 1495–1505 (The Metropolitan Museum of Art)

Enshrined at the Met Cloisters since its opening in 1938, the Unicorn Tapestries are its most iconic works of art. A source of inspiration for writers from James Thurber to J. K. Rowling, the tapestries, designed in Paris around 1500, have been variously interpreted as metaphors of the Christian faith, allusions to courtship and marriage, and as testament to the beliefs of centuries ago.

Barbara Drake Boehm, the Paul and Jill Ruddock Senior Curator for the Met Cloisters at The Metropolitan Museum of Art, distills the tapestries’ complex imagery as she gives them a fresh look. There’s a sense of being poised at the edge of the water that courses through the tapestries. We can perceive our medieval forebears’ profound sensitivity to nature and a sense of wonder that we are in danger of losing today.

World Art History Certificate elective: Earn 1/2 credit*

Patron Information

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*Enrolled participants in the World Art History Certificate Program receive 1/2 elective credit. Not yet enrolled? Learn about the program, its benefits, and how to register here.

This program is part of our
Smithsonian Associates Streaming series.