Mary Corbet

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I learned to embroider when I was a kid, when everyone was really into cross stitch (remember the '80s?). Eventually, I migrated to surface embroidery, teaching myself with whatever I could get my hands on...read more

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Magnificent Embroidery on Display in Cleveland (& back to normal!)


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A heads-up for those of you who live in the Cleveland area, or who will be passing through Cleveland anytime soon.

There’s a magnificent piece of 15th century embroidery on display at the Cleveland Museum of Art.

It’s a stunning example of split stitch shading, Or Nué, sculptured goldwork, and silk embroidery.

Thanks to Susan, a reader here on Needle ‘n Thread, who recently visited the CMA, and shared some images!

15th Century Embroidery on Altar Frontal: Coronation of the Virgin, Cleveland Museum of Art

The embroidery is of the Coronation of the Virgin, and it’s about 23″ round. You can find more images – including some close-up photos – and a thorough description of the medallion on the Cleveland Museum of Art website.

15th Century Embroidery on Altar Frontal: Coronation of the Virgin, Cleveland Museum of Art

The combination of split stitch embroidery in silk, Or Nué, and padded goldwork is stunning. The halos on the angels, their wings and tunics – this is the type of piece I could contemplate for hours. The closer you look, the more you see. See behind the angels’ halos there? That colorful swirled background? It’s the detail of the carpet at the base of the throne, worked in gold threads couched over in silk to create the design.

Could you imagine creating a piece of art like this? Or just one figure from a piece like this? If I could pick a figure from the image and reproduce it, it would be the little angel in blue, playing the mandolin, on the lower right.

Next time I drive to the East Coast, I’m definitely stopping in Cleveland.

In the meantime, for your Saturday Morning Browse, check out the Cleveland Museum of Art website!

Websites, Glitches, & Repairs – Oh My!

Yesterday, during some web work, Needle ‘n Thread rebelled and went berserk. It took a little bit of time to get things back to normal. If you received a “Test Message” via the daily newsletter, that was an error, and I apologize for bothering your inbox.

If you tried to leave a comment on yesterday’s give-away and encountered problems, please try again today – everything is working normally now.


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(4) Comments

  1. Dear Mary

    What a stunning piece of embroidery if only I lived in or near Cleveland I would definitely make a visit there, it looks an interesting museum. I love the halos the padded gold work imagine the time it took to complete this beautiful embroidery. Thanks for sharing this with us.

    Thanks for letting us know about the glitches I received an email and I thought something was wrong I’m glad everything is sorted and back to normal would not want to miss anything on Needle ‘n thread.

    Regards Anita Simmance

  2. Mary ,que gran pieza ,tienes mucha razon al hablar de no cansarce de verla ,lindos detalles de luz ,y material,que bien bordado esta
    gracias a nuestra amiga de clivelan ,yo soy Chilena muy dificil de ver personalmente
    un abrazo

  3. After going through all the closeups and the description and inscription, I clicked on the “see also” tag. That took me to a page (actually 5 pages) of embroideries that the museum owns. Moving your cursor over each item gives a bigger thumbnail of the whole item, date, and country of origin. Clicking on the thumbnail takes you to the page about the item. None had as many close-ups, but sometimes it showed the back of the item. There was also a description and inscription of the item. I could have spent hours on that page, and I may come back to it in the future.

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