Friday, 24 July 2015

Stag Gallery, Fontainebleu

The  spectacular Stag Gallery (Galerie des Cerfs) at Fontainebleu  was created for Henri IV.

It was decorated on three walls by Louis Poisson around 1600, with oblique views of the royal forests and residences.

 The Gallery was named after the antlers from stags hunted in the surrounding forests, some of the finest hunting in France, that are mounted on 20 identical  stags heads made of plaster.

It was in the Stag Gallery at Fontainebleu that Queen Christina of Sweden had her grand equerry, rumoured to have been her lover, Monaldeschi assassinated on 10 November, 1657 and so it is said in her presence.

The Stag Gallery now houses the copies of the antique sculptures from the Vatican collection that were cast by Primaticcio for Francis I. The bronzes were cast at Fontainebleu.


In the 18th century the Gallery was divided up to provide accommodation for Louis XV and Louis XVI's children. In 1860 Napoleon III had the partitions removed and that led to the discovery of the original decoration which was then restored to its appearance today.

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