29.06—06.10.2024
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Moses Beats Water from the Rock

Abraham van Diepenbeeck, NL
3rd quarter 17th century, wool, linen and silk, 370 x 510 cm
Moses Beats Water from the Rock dates back to the third quarter of the 17th century and is part of a series of tapestries depicting the history of Moses. These carpets were woven in the Antwerp workshop of Michiel Wauters after drawings by Abraham van Diepenbeeck. The carpet in the Kortrijk city hall is the only one from that series still preserved in Belgium. According to the book of Exodus, the work is about Moses' journey out of Egypt with the Israelites. When they reached Refidim, they had no water to drink and began to grumble to Moses. Mozes stood on the rock of Horeb and struck at the rock face with his staff, causing water to come out (Exodus, 17). This scene is not just about telling a Biblical story; it is also about the affirmation of power. At the time, tapestries were the most popular art form at the European courts. They were meant to colour the main rooms of powerful people. Intriguingly, this historical tapestry broaches the theme of water, a prominent theme that recurs in several places at the Kortrijk Triennial. It inspired Jan Van Imschoot to produce 42 drawings that are presented together with the tapestry. It also results in a dialogue with the textile works by Małgorzata Mirga-Tas and Felix Beaudry in the adjacent spaces.

23 artists present inspiring work at unique locations at historical sites in Kortrijk

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