Haute lisse [tapestry]

Discussion in 'French-English Vocabulary / Vocabulaire Français-Anglais' started by TheChabon, Nov 4, 2009.

  1. TheChabon Senior Member

    Buenos Aires
    In a literal sense, the expression seems to mean [tapestries vowen in a] 'vertical loom'.

    [ http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Loom#Haute_lisse_and_basse_lisse_looms ]

    But I am finding the term used in (mostly 19th century) German as 'Hautelisse', so I infer there must be some specific design/quality/size/material/whatever peculiarity to the 'hautelisses' --there is some reason why these Germans picked that term and not merely 'tapestry'. Maybe for some reason at some point it became a generic term for tapestry?

    I will be very grateful for any idea.
  2. TheChabon Senior Member

    Buenos Aires
    Found it.

    When working on the 'haute lisse' from the back of the cloth, the weaver looks at his work on the other side using a mirror. When working on the 'basse lisse' he works on top of the cloth and he can't see what he is doing --he is merely mechanically reproducing some pattern or drawing. So the 'haute lisses' were more of artistic tapestries, and the 'basse lisses' were more production-type, industrial reproduction things.


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