Virtual Lecture 12: Dr. Jessica Grimm and her quest for the origins of or nué, a medieval goldwork technique

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Dr. Jessica Grimm and her quest for the origins of or nué, a medieval goldwork technique

Lecturer: Dr. Jessica Grimm
Date: Saturday, December 11, 2021 1PM Eastern
Registration: November 15-22, 2021 1PM Eastern

As or nué is often considered the pinnacle of medieval goldwork techniques, you might be forgiven for thinking that it has been studied extensively. This is not the case. Apart from the fact that the finest pieces were made at the end of the medieval period in an area that is now Northern France, Belgium and the Netherlands, we know precious little. In my lecture, I’ll introduce you to some of the finest historical examples of this technique. We will also explore a much simpler technique that is similar to or nué and was developed in present-day Germany. Could this be a forerunner? And what has contemporary painting to do with the development of or nué? Last but not least, I will explain which modern embroidery materials are suitable for recreating this pinnacle of goldwork techniques. These don’t have to be expensive, but stranded cotton is strictly off limits.

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Dr. Jessica Grimm gained a doctorate in archaeozoology before she re-trained as a professional embroideress with the Royal School of Needlework. After visiting a medieval embroidery exhibition in the Netherlands in 2015, she embarked on a self-funded research project focused on the embroidery techniques used in these pieces. The results of which are disseminated through her weekly blog and in the embroidery courses she teaches.