Concours d'Etriers scarf 140 - flat

The story behind

Emile Hermès was a collector through and through. At the age of twelve he was already promoting the utilitarian and historical features of objects to the same rank as their beauty as he began to build up a collection with the horse as the common denominator – things to do with riding, things to do with travelling and so forth. Over the years, in the museum and the ornament cabinet, the collection came to symbolise the skills, ingenuity, inventiveness and broad outlook that are the bedrock of any creative work.
No less beautiful than they are vital, the stirrups reach out from the four corners of the carré like the four points of the compass and meet in a strange joyous ballet echoing with the tinkling of metal, the murmur of leather and the thud of wood. One of them, made in Mexico in the 20th century, with a monogram and a leather lining, rises to the centre from the left corner. Just above it is a motif of coloured flowers, a Chinese enamel from the previous century, as was the Brazilian brazier stirrup in fine openwork on its right.
Right at the top in the corner is an eye decorated with dragon heads, a Tibetan artefact from the early 19th century. And on the opposite side is a striking contrast in the beautiful simplicity of an African work of this century in bronze cut out in two triangles and a Brazilian work of the last century with floral scrolls encircling a five-pointed star. Made in France, Argentina, China or Peru, made of silver and horn, bronze, iron or brass, each of these stirrups carries a narrative told to us by this carré.
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