Grand Design: Pieter Coecke van Aelst and Renaissance Tapestry
October 8, 2014–January 11, 2015
This international loan exhibition will explore the achievements of the great northern Renaissance master, Pieter Coecke van Aelst (1502–1550). As the impressive body of his surviving drawings makes clear, Coecke was a master designer, devising projects across media, from tapestry series, to panel paintings, prints, stained glass, and goldsmith's work. The exhibition will unite nineteen of the grand tapestries he designed, woven in the great workshops of Brussels for collectors from Emperor Charles V, France's François Ier, and Henry VIII of England, to Cosimo de Medici, juxtaposed with a selection of his panel paintings, including a monumental triptych, and more than thirty drawings and prints. Coecke was also the translator and editor of influential Italian architectural treatises that will be included in the exhibition. In the midst of this productivity, Coecke also traveled extensively, and among the exhibits will be the fascinating woodcut frieze he designed, over fourteen feet in length, recording his experiences in Constantinople.