Connect with us


The stained glass windows of Auch Cathedral reveal their secrets



In the dark, the brilliance of the colors is even more striking. It is a real treasure of Auscitain and Gers heritage which has found its place in the choir of Sainte-Marie Cathedral. Produced in the 16th century over a short period of four years (1509-1513), the stained glass windows by master glassmaker Arnaud de Moles, born in the second half of the 15th century near Saint-Sever (Landes), constitute an exceptional ensemble due to their scope, but also the quality of the materials and the work accomplished. “The 18 windows remained homogeneous, in place, and did not suffer major damage because even during the Revolution, the Auscitains spared them”, underlines Françoise Gatouillat, member of the multidisciplinary scientific and technical committee set up in 2015 to monitor the building site.

“He is not someone who could work alone”

A first restoration of the stained glass windows of the Saint-Louis chapel was carried out in 2018 and 2019 by two master glassmakers, Anne Pinto, based in Tusson (Charente) and Claire Babet, based in Labourdinière-Saint-Loup (Eure-et-Loir ). In particular, they had removed the break seals and implemented the dubbing canopy. The stained glass windows of the axial chapel were restored in 2021 and 2022 by Pierre-Alain Parot, master glassmaker in Aiserey (Côte-d’Or), who died in February at the age of 72. years. In total, therefore, 6 of the 18 stained glass windows have undergone exemplary restoration, with work likely to resume in 2023. “one who was able to work alone. When you look at the pieces, there are differences in paint, in model,” says Françoise Gatouillat.

Made more than five centuries ago, the stained glass windows continue to reveal their secrets as the work progresses, to the delight of the researchers who accompany it.

Françoise Gatouillat will share her knowledge and enthusiasm during a conference scheduled for Thursday, September 11 at the Jérôme-Cuzin center*. In the meantime, Arnaud de Moles’ masterpiece remains within everyone’s reach. For the Auscitains as for the simple visitors of passage, it would be a pity to deprive oneself of it.

Duration: 1 hour. Free and free access. Contact on 05 62 05 22 89.

Donkey milk cosmetics in the Corbières

Him, from Brussels but for almost 50 years in France, landed at the age of 5 in the luggage of his parents wanting a change of air, from the mists of the north to the Mediterranean sun. After many odd jobs and a career as a vineyard worker, he and his wife were looking for a farm to buy. It took them nearly 4 years to find the rare bird by negotiating with a couple who had been living at the Pech d’Aspe estate for ten years in a donkey farm he had created. This was followed by on-the-job training with the former owner, a chemist by profession, in order to learn about donkey breeding and the formulas for developing the range of cosmetics based on this organic donkey’s milk.

A personal touch

“Belle lurette” named after the oldest donkey factory aged 28, changed hands and the Wagters of life. For nearly 6 years, the couple has been raising a dozen donkeys and donkeys on just over twenty hectares of scrubland and woods. A completely redone laboratory, a more extensive range of products, Charline and Nicolas have brought their personal touch to develop this production of cosmetics. This is highly regulated, as our Belgian-Aude local attests: “Each product has a file, must go before a toxicologist who validates the formula. Skin tests with the ANSM (National Agency for the Safety of Medicines) and a CPNP notification (Cosmetic Product Notification Portal), as many steps required for the approval of products on the markets”. Recently, the small company developed a honey soap promoted by the Tourist Office of Carcassonne. Nicolas milks the donkeys every morning and produces the products in the lab three times a week.

Chaotic marketing

If the production is well-oiled, the marketing turns out to be more chaotic, as Charline deplores: “We have great difficulty getting ourselves referenced in certain distribution circuits. let’s do everything from A to Z, from proximity in relation to their businesses. In the end, many have an incoherent speech and do not keep their promises. We want to grow and it is not easy. We are digging our furrow, all alone”. Markets, shops, some hotels trust them and appreciate the quality of soaps, milks and other gels. Just like the Tarbes agricultural show or every year, “Belle lurette” is a hit.

Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *