The Month of June/The Sign of Cancer, from The Grotesque Months

A work made of wool and silk, slit and double interlocking tapestry weave.
CC0 Public Domain Designation

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  • A work made of wool and silk, slit and double interlocking tapestry weave.

Date:

c. 1726

Artist:

After a design by Claude III Audran (1658–1734), 1708–09
Woven at the Manufacture Royale des Gobelins
France, Paris

About this artwork

This narrow panel and its companion belong to a suite known as The Grotesque Months, which depicts the 12 months of the year and their associated zodiac signs. A Roman deity, centrally positioned within a pergola, personifies each month. June, with the sign of Cancer—a crab—in the oval at the top of the tapestry, shows the messenger god Mercury. Above and below Mercury appear his associated attributes, including his emblematic rooster, and a miniature scene showing an episode from the tale of his sly betrayal and murder of the giant Argus. These tapestries are in the light, open style inspired by Renaissance artists’ rediscovery and reinterpretation of the Classical wall paintings found among the buried ruins of ancient buildings, called grotti, or caves. By the later 17th century, this so-called grotesque style appealed to an elite group of French aristocrats led by Louis, the Grand Dauphin (1682–1712), son and heir of Louis XIV (r. 1715–74).

Currently Off View

Textiles

Artist

Claude III Audran

Title

The Month of June/The Sign of Cancer, from The Grotesque Months

Origin

Paris

Date

1716–1736

Medium

Wool and silk, slit and double interlocking tapestry weave

Dimensions

71.5 x 293.7 cm (28 1/8 x 115 5/8 in.)

Credit Line

Bessie Bennett Endowment

Reference Number

1951.260

Extended information about this artwork

Object information is a work in progress and may be updated as new research findings emerge. To help improve this record, please email .

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