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Three Faiths Scriptorium Videos, For Teachers and Students: 2 - Pens, Paint-making, and Illumination

October 22, 2010

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Watch how bird feathers are carved into quills, how paint is made, and how gold is added to illuminate manuscripts in this video from the Scriptorium at The New York Public Library's Three Faiths exhibition, open Friday, October 22, 2010 through Sunday, February 27, 2011.


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Hi, I cannot visit physically this exhibition, I'm Spanish living in London. However, as a historian (I have a PhD in the history of Scientific instruments) and artist (my web page is given above), I enjoyed the combination of digital use, dexterity of the people presenting how things are done and the sub-titles which I found a bit fast if one is looking at the pictures, on the other hand you put a lot together in only 5 or 6 minutes. I come from a city in Spain: Teruel, where the three faiths lived together and very happily in the Middle Ages. In fact, it was while I was studying more modules of another degree a few years ago that I also found out that half of the population of my city were killed when they protected the Arabs because they did not want them to leave in the years when Spain was unified under one kingdom and one faith. In fact, the other two faiths stayed in Teruel for 100 more years, until war made them give up defending their neighbours and friends: arabs and jews. Did you know that in my city women could take men to court during the Middle Ages? We had the most progressive 'Code of Justice' in the whole of Europe, only to loose it I guess when the unification under one religion came about. I always had a lot of admiration for the fact that the three faiths could live together then; each one contributing to the running of the city, its architecture, culture, medicine and finances. I cannot understand what happened later on with all the abuses of humanity in the name of the greedy 'few' in all those countries in Europe and further away. I captured the moral pain I felt after seein some photographs of concentration camps in a painting. Too disturbing for some to look at. It is now on canvas. Well done, I wish I could see your exhibition. Helena, Maria Helena Marconell PhD

painting and gilding manuscripts

What a wonderful art form - and what superlative artists! I only wish I could get myself to the Met to see their work first hand. The Internet is a blessing for many of us.