The Pontifical Vestments of the Royal Embroiderer, Antonio Gómez de los Ríos

Between 1743-1756, the royal embroiderer Antonio Gómez de los Ríos created a full pontifical set of vestments for the Royal Chapel of the Palace of Madrid. These exquisite vestments contain a series of embroideries done in the effusive baroque style that were based on a number of painted masterworks.

Patirmonia Nacional in Spain provide the following description of the set:

In 1743, the Chamber Embroiderer Antonio Gómez de los Ríos began... work of embroidering an entire magnificent pontifical [set] to equip the New Royal Palace of Madrid..The set, which is of exceptional quality, was comprised of pieces of liturgical clothing and other ornaments necessary for the religious ceremonies of the Royal Chapel. All of them were embroidered in coloured silks that stood out on a white field that, in turn, was embellished with the emblems of the reigning monarchs, Ferdinand VI and Barbara of Braganza, embroidered in gold (gilt silver threads). In this way, castles, lions, the fleurs-de-lis of the House of Bourbon and the five Portuguese quinas covered a whole series of scenes and motifs of a religious nature, as well as floral decorations.  

It is made up of more than 40 pieces for the Royal Chapel of the New Palace. All the pieces are made with the scholarly embroidery technique in a baroque style with a great variety of stories of a religious nature that are made in the nuance or needle painting technique, in which the chamber embroiderer achieved a sublime quality  Using this technique, the embroiderer reproduced a wide variety of stories of a religious nature, based on paintings from the Royal Collection, being the most significant work of the time.       

Among these scenes we can highlight those referring to the childhood of Christ, the Coronation of the Virgin, the Vision of Jacob, Abraham and Melchizedek, priests carrying the Ark of the Covenant, Moses with the tables of the law, etc. 

Patrimonio Nacional provides the following photos taken from the set, in which you'll want to take particular notice of the embroidered scenes which are so refined in nature that they come across as though they were indeed the very paintings which they sought to emulate:

In addition to these images, our friend and associate Nicola de Grandi recently took a number of additional photographs of his own, showing some more of the pieces of this set.

Dalmatic. One will also note the Spanish collarin.

Mitra pretiosa

Shield of a cope

Details from the orphrey of the cope

Details from the orphrey of the cope

An absolutely stunning set.

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