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09:49 Dec 18, 2016
French to English translations [PRO] Art/Literary - Art, Arts & Crafts, Painting / museum display
French term or phrase:cimaises
This comes from the description of a museum exhibition. The term cimaise appears a few times, but I'm a little stuck on its use in this particular sentence:
"La galerie au décor minéral était toute indiquée pour abriter la promenade qui se déploie
entre les hautes **cimaises** de verdures."
It's just a sentence in a long list of short descriptions, so the rest of the surrounding text is unrelated, but refers to the strolls people would take through the gardens.
Here's another example where the word "tapissées" suggests it refers more to the walls themselves: "Pour la chasse, l’espace est celui d’une clairière, lieu de rendez-vous et de départ d’un laisser-courre et les **cimaises tapissées** d’un fond naturel donnent l’illusion de la vitesse et des cavalcades dans les sous-bois."
I've come across various definitions of cimaises, the most common being picture rails, picture hanging systems, gallery rods, moulding, exhibition panels, and even the more figurative "gallery walls" (which is what I used for the second example).
But I'm a bit thrown off by this notion of "hautes cimaises de verdure". I'm trying to imagine what this looks like, perhaps greenery hung from picture rails high up on the gallery walls? It might be easier to figure out if I had a picture, but since I can't go to the exhibit myself, was hoping some art/museum specialists might have some idea...
Ok so I looked over the French museum equipment site, and they also use the word "cloison" as a synonym for cimaise. And the images show something more wall-like than what I was thinking of. So I poked around English-language sites and found all sorts of options: display walls, wall panels, gallery walling, walling panels, museum panels, walling systems, exhibition partitions, and of course display panels as mentioned by Charles. But thinking of these cimaises more as walls (or indeed very large panels - when I visualized panels I had imagined something much smaller) helps a lot. So I'll figure out some way to fit in the notion of panels/walls and greenery/foliage (though probably not real...). Thanks to all for your contributions to this thought process!
@ph-b, thanks for these suggestions, I hadn't thought of the other definition of verdure. Since this was in the promenade section imitating a walk through the gardens I was stuck on the pretty literal sense of greenery. Hard to know without being able to see the space. But thanks also for the link to the museum equipment, interesting to see that the panels can indeed be quite large and free-standing. Lots to think about! I might make a couple of suggestions to the client and/or ask them to describe what they mean since there are definitely a few possibilities.
You’ve already said that one of the definitions you found is ‘exhibition panel’. This is confirmed by this website specialising in museum equipment. Here is the cimaises page : http://www.promuseum.fr/recherche/multi-criteres.php When you click on the individual photos, you’re told cimaises are cloisons modulaires légères et rigides, some of which can be quite tall.
With regard to verdures, you say you’re thinking of ‘greenery hung from…’, which I understand to mean ‘real hanging plants’. However, have you seen this entry for verdure in ATILF : "P. méton. Tapisserie à verdure(s)/de verdure ou, p. ell., verdure (de Flandres, etc.). Tapisserie représentant principalement un ensemble de végétaux. Tendu de verdure(s)."
Could it be that your text speaks of tall exhibition panels covered with tapestries (?)/wallpaper (?) with a flower-inspired design/pattern?
Thanks for these suggestions! @Charles, I didn't really understand the Le Nôtre reference either at first, but after re-reading it with your interpretation it makes a bit more sense. I perused images of the gardens of Versailles to see what your article was referring to, and it sounds like it's something like this: https://fr.wikipedia.org/wiki/Grande_Commande#/media/File:Qu... Basically there are a number of hedges in the gardens that Le Nôtre likely trained to either form a solid background for the statues, or in the case of this picture, to create an arched space to fit the statue into.
So it almost sounds like my text is referring to these hedges, though not sure I can take the liberty of just using that word. Maybe "tall walls of greenery" or something like that, if I stick with the notion of Le Nôtre training the hedges to showcase the statues?
Very tricky. I think the relevant meaning of "cimaise" is probably "[Dans une galerie d'art, une exposition, etc.] Place de choix, à hauteur de vue", rather than "Boiserie à moulure placée à hauteur d'appui sur les murs d'une pièce et plus particulièrement sur un meuble" (quoting the Trésor). In other words, display space or perhaps display panel. But I'm far from sure.
The expression "cimaises de verdures" is used here, in relation to an exhibition, referring to the gardens of Versailles, and appears to refer to a kind of display panel or display space of greenery for displaying statuary (though I may be misunderstanding it):
"Le Nôtre et les jardins de Versailles : du land art avant l'heure
Jardinier, oui, mais pour élaguer des dénivelés, tailler des allées majestueuses, planter des parterres d'eau dans l'axe des perspectives, bouturer des fontaines au détour d'un bosquet, palisser des cimaises de verdure destinées à mettre en valeur les statues." http://www.telerama.fr/scenes/le-notre-et-les-jardins-de-ver...