Friday, 6 January 2017

Revolutionary wallpaper discovered in a French church

This splendid Revolutionary wallpaper was discovered last year during renovations to the church of  Notre-Dame-de-la-Daurade  in the little town of  Tarascon-sur-Ariège  in south-west France. The church was briefly converted into a Temple of Reason in 1793. 

The paper, which is white with painted red and blue stripes, was stuck directly to the walls and lay concealed behind the retable in the choir.  One of the panels, revealed in June, is almost complete.  The local historical society has managed to unearth a register from the local commune dated 2nd December 1793 which  records the order for the church's re-dedication to "Reason, Liberty and Equality";  the local officials and National Guard  turned out for the occasion and patriots were required to decorate their doors with oak branches and tricolour flags. 

The find has attracted a lot of attention, and is likely to prove quite a conservation headache.  A figure of 20,000€ has been mooted, more if the 18th-century paintings of the retable, the original subject of the restoration,  are to be replaced whilst leaving the paper accessible.


 FranceInfo"Des papiers peints de la Révolution uniques en France découverts dans une église de Tarascon-sur-Ariège",post of 11/07/2016

La Dépêche, "Sous les tableaux de l'église, des traces de la Révolution"  post of 15/07/2016

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