Unknown, A Tournament Contest, about 1560 - 1570.
The Renaissance courts of Europe were meant to dazzle—courtiers feasting at lavish tables and knights in gleaming armor might spring to mind. Life at court was certainly lavish, but everything from prayer to the display of heraldry was governed by complex codes of conduct. Even leisure activities such as hunting and jousting were subject to strict social hierarchies. Yet, opulence was everywhere. This exhibition explores how the luxury arts, from illuminated manuscripts to textiles, helped construct the identities of the court elite.
(Photo The J. Paul Getty Museum, Los Angeles, Ms. Ludwig XV 14, fol. 27v.)