Design: Llibre Vermell de Montserrat
The Llibre Vermell de Montserrat (Red Book of Montserrat) is a manuscript collection of devotional texts containing some late medieval songs. The 14th-century manuscript was compiled in and is still located at the monastery of Montserrat outside Barcelona in Catalonia, Spain.
I have studied the historic parchments and notations to make suitable designs, that I then hand etch in to my antique materials. Every item in my online shop, I have designed and etched by hand, which makes them unique and one of a kind items. I wanted to create something meaningful and beautiful but I also wanted to include the mindset of sustainability in to it. Therefor the materials are old antique items redesigned for a bigger and musical purpose of connection and friendship.
The items patina therefor gives the history and culture context more veritas, and also reminds us of the people who came before us. I also arrange, record and make music videos of all my designs. In the slideshow down below, you can see some of the designs from different songs from Llibre Vermell de Montserrat.
My current Llibre Vermell de Montserrat Designs are:
- Stella Splendens
- Cuncti Simus Concanentes
- Los Set Gotxs
If we travel a bit outside of Barcelona in Spain, we find the monastery of Montserrat. This place was a site of religious pilgrimages for a long time but now only ruins can be found of the 11th-century Benedictine monastery. The new monastery that stands there today was built in the 19th century.
If we would to believe the legend, it is said that the Virgin Mary has performed numerous miracles there which also explains the fact that the monastery of Montserrat has long been a center of devotion for the Virgin Mary.
A large number of pilgrims went there, mainly because of their belief in the wonder-working powers of the black statue of the Virgin Mary .
One of the most precious treasures from the library of Montserrat is a codex from the late fourteenth century, the ‘Llibre Vermell’ or ‘Red Book’. The Llibre Vermell de Montserrat (Red Book of Montserrat) is a manuscript collection of devotional texts containing some late medieval songs. The manuscript is named after it’s red velvet cover which was created in the late 19th century.
Sadly 35 of the original 172 sheets in folio of this manuscript are lost today. Besides various other contents, mainly for liturgical use, it also contains ten musical works notated during the years 1396-1399. The songs also had a very specific purpose and we will let one of the contemporary scribes explain this:
“As it happens that the pilgrims, while holding night vigil in the church of the Blessed Virgin from Montserrat, sometimes desire to sing and to dance and even so during the day, in the Church Square, where only virtuous and pious songs may be sung, some suitable songs have been written down here for this need. These should be used in a respectful and moderate manner, so as not to disturb those who wish to continue their prayers and religious contemplations.”
In other words, these songs where in many ways created for the pilgrims to use, so that they could sing and dance in a more conservative way and where also meant to replace the traditional secular songs and dances performed by the celebrating pilgrims during the night vigil.
This was also a good idea since there was no pilgrims hostel at Montserrat, the visitors spent the night in the church, thus rearranging the liturgical room into a hostel.
Kleberg Design – Llibre Vermell de Montserrat