Bench with Aubusson tapestry,  1950, L 78 W 60 H 34 cm

A centuries-old tradition, the craft of Aubusson tapestry consists of weaving an image using processes practised in Aubusson and a number of other localities in the Creuse region of France. This craft produces mainly large decorative wall hangings but also rugs and pieces of furniture. Aubusson tapestry can be based on an image in any artistic style, prepared by a paper ‘cartoon’ (template) designer. Weaving is done manually by a lissier,or weaver, on a loom positioned horizontally, working on the reverse side of the tapestry, and using yarns that are hand-dyed in house. This process is time-consuming and expensive. The Aubusson tapestries are a gold standard throughout the world, to the extent that Aubusson has become a common noun in some languages. [Inscribed in 2009 on the Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity - Unesco]