The topics of this blog are Armand-Jean du Plessis, Cardinal Duke of Richelieu, and the IDEAL CITY built on his command next to his magnificent CHÂTEAU on the borders of Touraine, Anjou and Poitou, in France.

Thursday, 1 October 2009

Richelieu's Fontainebleau - 2 - Wall sculpture

In one of the wings of the palace at Fontainebleau built by Henri IV in 1606-9, one can see examples of the façade treatment similar to that of the old lost château de Richelieu. The walls were interspersed with niches - both circular and semi-cylindric, that framed statues and busts of antique heros and heroines, both mythic and historic. 

In the old engraving of the castle below this can be seen in the courtyard part-elevation lower right. It is hard to visualise this rather 'bling', seemingly over-decorated manner.  It doesn't seem so exaggerated in reality.  At Richelieu the statuary would have been inserted in an all-cut-stone ashlar wall rather than in polychrome brick/stone as at 'rural' Fontainebleau.

From Éminence Rouge

Have a look at this video of a CAD recreation of the château de Richelieu that shows the way it was decorated with ancient statuary. Not bad for just a few bits and bytes.

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