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In order to pay homage to Tolkien on the occasion of the 50th anniversary of his death, the Château-Musée de Saumur presents from June 3 to November 5, 2023 an exhibition entitled Tolkien, the power of the imagination. From Aubusson to Saumur, journey to Middle-earth.
Thanks to the exceptional loan of tapestries and cartoons from the Tolkien tapestry woven by the Cité internationale de la Tapisserie in Aubusson, the Château-Museum offers a journey into the imagination of Tolkien and fantasy.
The monumental work of JRR Tolkien, composed during the XNUMXth century by drawing on the Western literary tradition, creates an abundant universe whose ever-renewed enrichment structures our societies, feeds our entertainment and our representations of the world. In this continuous movement of inspiration and dissemination of fantasy, the Middle Ages are fantasized through the prism of the marvelous that its dreamlike productions helped shape.
The castle of Saumur, whose ascending and seigneurial architecture was designed to mark the spirits and the landscape of the XNUMXth century, today embodies the ideal castle, set in this equally ideal Loire Valley.
With the help of loans granted by numerous institutions or individuals, works from the collections of the Château-Musée and an order placed with the artist Émeric Lhuisset, the exhibition proposes to explore the following themes: the work of Tolkien, exhibiting Aubusson tapestries and cartoons from The Hobbit, The Lord of the Rings and The Silmarillion; the literary genre of fantasy and its topoï which are the hero, the quest, the journey, the enigma, the treasure, the passage, the dragon; the imagined Middle Ages and the ideal castle; the variation of fantasy in art and pop culture, with cinema, comics, video games, cosplay; finally, the contemporary and geopolitical perspectives of fantasy.
The art of tapestry in general and the know-how of Aubusson in particular will be particularly valued throughout the exhibition. A cultural program and mediation activities for all audiences will accompany the exhibition until November.
Included in the entrance fee to the castle.
Guided tour times: 11 a.m. and 15 p.m.