Meymac
Meymac

Along this multimedia trial you can explore the cultural heritage of Meymac, and discover, through videos and audio commentary, the abbey and its history, agricultural heritage and also the unusual people whose actions left their mark on the area.

1h
1,3km
Steps
Departure :
1.
Landscape, garden and agricultural heritage

Meymac lies in an area mostly covered by forest, but that has not always been the case. The development of the countryside and how and why it has changed are explained in this first video.

2.
Arrangement of public space

Watch this video and explore how the town grew up around the abbey in medieval times, then beyond the walls, around the old Viscounts castle and the suburbs.

3.
Defensive constructions, Buildings and public life

This tower is a remnant of the towns old fortifications and has served as a belfry, a free-standing spire, symbol of the towns independence from the local lord. Listen to its history.

4.
Traditions and beliefs

This is a statue of Saint Léger, whose relics are preserved in the church at Meymac. Listen to the audio guide for a brief history of Saint Léger.

5.

What can you see on both sides of this cross?

6.
Buildings and public life

Classified as a Monument of Historical Importance, this 16th century covered marketplace has a beautifully carved wooden frame in the shape of an upturned boat's hull. Listen to the audio guide to find out more.

7.
Religious buildings and communities

The origins of Meymac date back to the foundation of its abbey. All that remains today of the old religious precinct are the abbey’s church and the adjoining monastic buildings. Watch this video to see the construction and its history.

8.
Objects of religious art, Sculpture

As you enter the church at Meymac you will notice the carved Romanesque capitals that warrant close inspection. Listen to the audio guide for tips on what to look out for.

9.
Objects of religious art, Painting, tapestry and fire arts, Contemporary creation

Four of the church's stained glass windows were created by Limousin master glass painter Francis Chigot (1860-1960) Listen to the next part of the audio guide to find out about their symbolism.

10.
Objects of religious art

This organ possesses a remarkable acoustic quality specifically designed for baroque music. Its casing was inspired by various 17th century instruments. Listen to the audio guide to find out how the organ was built, and to hear an excerpt from a recording of the organ...

11.

For a long time it was thought that this Virgin and child was a Pietà. Do you know what a Pietà is?

12.

What nickname do you think the Black Virgin was given?

13.
Memory and destinies of men, Landscape, garden and agricultural heritage

This former Deputy for the Popular Front party was very heavily engaged in Meymac life between 1913 and 1973. He was active in the development of farming and forestry, archaeological digs and he collected objects of ethnographic interest.
The collections he amassed over the course of his life are on display in the museum that bears his name.

14.
Industrial, artisanal and commercial heritage

This is the story of local man, Jean Gaye-Bordas, who developed a very unusual business in Meymac in the 19th century, all based around a geographical fib!

15.
Houses, mansions and dwellings, Industrial, artisanal and commercial heritage

Explore the heritage of the buildings which sprang up in the late 19th and early 20th centuries due to the economic rise of the Meymac wine merchants, who grew rich following the example of Jean Gaye-Bordas.

16.

What is the intended purpose of this sculpture?

17.
Contemporary creation

It is extraordinary to have a centre for contemporary arts in the midst of such a rural setting. In this interview the centre's founder, and current Director, Caroline Bissière, explains how the renowned centre works and what it hopes to achieve in the contemporary art world.

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