The Royal Tapestry Factory has an important collection of rugs and tapestries. This includes pieces made at the factory as well as other ones in storage.
The works making up the collection originate, on the one hand, from important cultural institutions such as Museo Arqueológico Nacional (Spain’s National Archaeological Museum) and Museo de Artes Decorativas (Spain’s Museum of Decorative Arts). The most outstanding ones are the 17th century Acts of the Apostles tapestries, woven in Flanders following Rafael Sanzio’s cartoons.
The Royal Factory also showcases some of the textiles produced in the very factory and designed by the greatest painters in the factory’s history (Goya, Teniers, Juan Gris, Pérez Villalta etc).
In addition to the collection of tapestries and rugs, the main tools used in craftsmanship are exhibited. They include historical looms, spinning wheels, spools and various cartoons found in the factory’s picture archive.
The archive of the Royal Tapestry Factory is a primary source for the study of textile arts in Spain.
Given the nature of the information stored therein, the archive is organized into two large files:
- Historical Archive: dedicated to storing the factory’s administrative paperwork.
- Graphic Archive: made up of sketches and cartoons used in the production of the factory’s famous fabrics.
Currently the cataloguing process is in its final phase. Thus, with a view to fostering knowledge and admiration for the art of tapestry, the Royal Tapestry Factory is currently developing a programme of temporary exhibitions that will turn the spotlight on the archive’s unpublished content.
Given its desire to promote innovation in art, the Royal Factory has included in its hundred-year-old catalogue designs of avant-garde artists.
The selection of contemporary tapestries and rugs has not stopped growing, turning the Factory into a meeting point between the ancestral tradition of hand-weaving and the contemporary artistic avant-garde.
Works from the following artists have already been impeccably translated into the language of wool and silk.
Guillermo Pérez Villalta
Agatha Ruiz de la Prada