Events | May 9, 2012

Innovative Technology and Design at Les Enluminures NY Gallery

Sandra Hindman, the owner of Les Enluminures, known for its museum quality Medieval and Renaissance Illuminated Manuscripts and art, has opened a new gallery in New York.  This is in addition to its Paris gallery of more than twenty years, located opposite the Louvre at Les Louvre de Antiquairs.

Les Enluminures ( now occupies the entire seventh floor Penthouse of a landmark townhouse on 23 East 73rd Street, between Madison and Fifth Avenues.

Dr. Hindman says, “Our beautiful new gallery in New York is composed of three rooms, one of which is lit by an extraordinary skylight that spans the width of the south facing room.  The New York gallery was designed by Peter J. Vitakis, Architect, who modeled it after the C.G. Boerner space in the same building that was designed by the KSA Architects P.C. of New York.  The space was formerly occupied by Trinity Fine Art, which is based in London and Milan.”

“New York is a wonderful place to exhibit and sell works of art” says Sandra Hindman. “We have been coming here since the early 1990s to participate in antique shows such as the Winter Antiques Show in January, book fairs like the New York Antiquarian Book Fair in April, and special exhibitions. For three years in a row we did themed exhibitions hosted by the C.G. Boerner Gallery on the third floor of the same building, and they were extremely successful.  New York has always been our best market.  So, when this magnificent space came available and was offered to me, I didn’t even think for one minute - I just said yes.”

The opening show for the new gallery “An Intimate Art - Books of Hours” will be on view through May 25.  The installation of the exhibition for Les Enluminures was undertaken by William Stender of 10-31, Inc.

The Les Enluminures gallery in New York also features an innovative and award-winning technology called TURNING THE PAGES that allows visitors to actually “read” Medieval manuscripts on display. The app is installed on three different user friendly I-Pads that are mounted on smart contemporary stands manufactured by Absolute in the UK.  

Hindman says, "21st century technology such as TURNING THE PAGES and social media sites such as Facebook and Twitter are introducing whole new generations of people to these wonderful old books and historic works of art.  The sense of these being inaccessible and out of reach of ordinary art lovers is gone. No more hushed libraries!"

When asked why she chose the subject of Books of Hours for the opening exhibition, Sandra Hindman remarked:  “Everybody knows something about Books of Hours and there are extraordinary collections in New York, especially at the Morgan Library and Museum.  There are a number of important private collectors, specialist curators, and professors in this field in the city.  And, indeed, for most people the Middle Ages seems so remote and inaccessible.  It conjures up images of knights in armor, castles, and cathedrals.  But, Books of Hours represent a way in which everyone can have access to the Middle Ages, because they bring alive the private lives of ordinary people from so long ago.  In imitation of monks in nearby monasteries, ordinary people ordered books from which they could pray at home eight times a day, like armchair monks.  They carried them about with them.  For example, one book in the show was owned by a Catalan textile merchant who wrote in his book a list of his inventory and the dates of the trade shows he had to attend.  Patrons asked artists to paint their pictures in their books, such as a mother and daughter in a Norman book in the show or a husband and wife shown kneeling before the Virgin and angels in a Bruges book.  They ordered pictures of their preferred saints:  in an age before dentistry Saint Appolonia, patron saint of teeth, was especially popular.  So was Saint Margaret, patron saint of childbirth, because Books of Hours were often wedding presents to a newly married couple.  As Dr. Christopher de Hamel states in the introduction to the exhibition catalogue:  “No one can claim an understanding of the Middle Ages who has not read a book of hours in bed.”
May 1 - 25
23 East 73 Street 7th floor
New York NY 10021
212 717 7273