Sydney’s art-lovers have been captivated by The Lady and the Unicorn – the series of six intricate wool and silk tapestries (c1500) from Flanders which depict the six senses – sight, touch, taste, hearing, smell and desire.
Featured prominently in the tapestry which depicts ‘hearing’ is a positive organ. The scene is an intriguing one which tells us much about the lady who probably came from nobility as she is appears to be an accomplished musician, playing her keyboard without reference to a score, whilst her companion stands opposite her operating the bellows which power the organ.
But what did the positive organ sound like?
Check out this video of Dutch medieval music specialist Jankees Braaksma, at a concert in the Dutch village of Beerta in 2010.