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Fashion The Visual Image Portraits


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Fashion The Visual Image Portraits

  1. 1. FASHION: THE VISUAL IMAGE Symbolism, Power and Representation: Dress in Portraits
  2. 2. Clothing is not just clothes <ul><li>It can carry a variety of social, economic and moral distinctions and messages. </li></ul><ul><li>But, what we know of the past is just a small ‘scraping of the barrel. </li></ul><ul><li>NB: In the Middle Ages it was men who were the ‘fashion victims’. </li></ul><ul><li>A description of King  Louis IX of France (1214 - 1270): &quot;he went into his garden dressed in a camel's-hair coat, a surcoat of linsey-woolsey without sleeves, a black silk cloak without a hood, and a hat trimmed with peacocks' feathers. At other times he was dressed in a coat of blue silk, a surcoat and mantle of scarlet satin, and a cotton cap.&quot; </li></ul>
  3. 3. THOSE MESSAGES CAN ACTUALLY BE LETHAL <ul><li>Inside-versus-outside perspectives and hidden meaning in many styles, such as pleats on shirts or pants, which helped two major prison gangs identify each other. </li></ul><ul><li>A gang investigator told about a homicide where the dead person was found with a blue rag in his hand and a red rag in his back pocket. </li></ul><ul><li>“ The dead person had been carrying two colors, thinking that depending on the situation, he would pull out a rag to show his affiliation with one group or the other, and he would be safe, But, he had misread the signs and had selected the wrong color. Thus, he was killed by a gang member who had perceived him as claiming alliance with a rival gang.” </li></ul>
  4. 4. WHAT WERE THEY SAYING? <ul><li>Until the late 1900s (Impressionism) there was no art market of any note. </li></ul><ul><li>Painters were jobbing hacks. </li></ul><ul><li>Paintings were commissioned to show the patron in a good light or show power. </li></ul><ul><li>It was the clothing in the pictures that was expensive and to be seen with meaning. </li></ul>
  5. 5. IF YOU KNOW THE DRESS HISTORY SOME PICTURES LOOK DIFFERENT <ul><li>Jean-Honore Fragonard </li></ul><ul><li>THE SWING (1767) </li></ul><ul><li>Wallace Collection </li></ul>
  7. 7. Beware of Mistakes When Looking at Visual Sources <ul><li>Tissot (1883-5) </li></ul><ul><li>Paris </li></ul><ul><li>“ L’Ambitieuse” </li></ul>
  8. 8. COLOURS WERE SO IMPORTANT But they fade!
  9. 9. Meanings Do Change <ul><li>Around 1780 </li></ul><ul><li>Duchess of Athol and her Children </li></ul><ul><li>Gender started at the age of 6 for boys, up until that time dress was much the same. </li></ul><ul><li>“ Breeching” a great event for boys, he then moved away from his mother and into the world of males. In poor families dresses would be worn into the teens by boys. </li></ul><ul><li>For a girl womanhood was menstruation, as in many societies today </li></ul>
  10. 10. Blue for a Girl: Pink for a Boy
  11. 11. Some Medieval Propaganda <ul><li>Jan Van Eyk (1436) Madonna and Child with Canon Joris who commissioned the painting </li></ul><ul><li>(Black and white of purity and piety) </li></ul><ul><li>Madonna blue or Vermillion </li></ul><ul><li>Brilliant blue was wealth (Lapis) </li></ul><ul><li>Canon to the left of the painting </li></ul><ul><li>Medieval babies were pretty ugly </li></ul>
  12. 12. SYMBOLISM (DUTCH) Goltzius (1578) Lucretia and Handmaids: Leyster (F) 1650 The Proposition <ul><li>Spinning virtuous distaff spinster. Spinning moral rather than job. Duties of wife or passed by wife to servant. </li></ul><ul><li>Virgin Mary spinner of life </li></ul><ul><li>Erotic metaphors for copulation, needle passing through cloth, weaving shuttle, embroidery. (With a man in the room) </li></ul><ul><li>Stand on right </li></ul><ul><li>If a man in the room (Cuckold or mollycoddled) </li></ul><ul><li>Lace making a frivolity when it was frowned upon </li></ul><ul><li>Male Spinner Topsy Turvy world. Weak with women. </li></ul><ul><li>Men in female domain were fools </li></ul><ul><li>Women in male domain (Weaving) respectable and strong </li></ul>
  13. 13. “ Married in her Hair” <ul><li>Portrait of a Lady c1400 </li></ul><ul><li>Veils from the time of crusades, also in Genesis 24:65 </li></ul><ul><li>Mary conceived through her ear to remain chaste so head covers should come to the ears </li></ul><ul><li>Head coverings not an option (Eve’s penance) </li></ul><ul><li>These head fashions really frowned on by the Church. One of the reasons that God sent the plague. Took time so vanity </li></ul><ul><li>Note fashion for shaving eyebrows (The 1930s 500 years in advance) </li></ul><ul><li>Once married exposing hair was tantamount to advertising whoredom </li></ul>
  14. 14. Hans Memling Portraits <ul><li>Woman’s hands devotional. Man’s hands on frame of painting so secular. </li></ul><ul><li>Wealthy, black clothes (cork ash and indigo dyed-not fast), spotted fur (civet) </li></ul><ul><li>BUT did they really look like this? Pock marked and teeth. (mouth closed) </li></ul>
  15. 15. Giovanni & Giovanna Arnolfini Wedding (Van Eyk) 1434 <ul><li>She is not pregnant – it is the fashion of the day (Hands through pockets to lift gown) </li></ul><ul><li>A Mass of coded social signals. </li></ul><ul><li>Dressed in black and in fur. </li></ul><ul><li>Simplicity and professionalism: standing on right. </li></ul><ul><li>Dominant Renaissance elbow </li></ul><ul><li>Musical instrument harmony </li></ul><ul><li>Dog for faithfulness </li></ul><ul><li>Clogs show domestic harmony </li></ul><ul><li>Fur slippers are sexual </li></ul><ul><li>Oranges: Garden of Eden or wealth </li></ul><ul><li>“ She I sin green for the last time (green the marriage bed: The Song of Solomon) Also hope </li></ul>
  16. 16. Allegories upon Allegories <ul><li>The Procuress (Van Honthorst) </li></ul><ul><li>1625 </li></ul><ul><li>In Style of Caravaggio </li></ul><ul><li>Lute the shorthand for lovers and sex </li></ul><ul><li>Hats and bonnets with feathers show loose morals </li></ul><ul><li>(Borch) </li></ul><ul><li>Suiters Visit </li></ul>
  17. 17. THE AMBASSADORS (1533) <ul><li>Holbein 1447-1543 </li></ul><ul><li>A Mass of Symbols and Representations </li></ul><ul><li>Left: Jean de Dinteville Ambassador Francois Ist </li></ul><ul><li>Right: George de Seelve, Bishop of Lavaur (25) </li></ul><ul><li>Silk, furs, gold velvet </li></ul><ul><li>Liturgical Gloves. Black for Good Friday am. (Red for Good Friday pm) </li></ul>
  18. 18. LITURGICAL GLOVES <ul><li>This is a pair of liturgical gloves from 1510 and were the property of an Archbishop in the Rhine region. They were knitted in red silk with metal threads at a gauge of 25 stitches to the inch. This pair of gloves demonstrates the use of gold thread incorporated into the knitting about the fingers to depict rings. It also demonstrates that the cuffs of gloves could be knitted as a part of the body of the glove and not applied. </li></ul><ul><li>These gloves are dated to 1245 and are a pair of liturgical gloves which belonged to the Archbishop Rodrigo Ximenez de Rada. They are knitted in silk at a very tiny gauge of approximately 25 stitches per inch. A variety of 2 color patterns decorate the gloves. </li></ul>
  19. 19. My Very Best Picture <ul><li>Billy </li></ul>
  20. 20. TUDOR POWER POLITICS Not for Public Show <ul><li>Ruler of all he surveyed </li></ul><ul><li>A catch for any woman </li></ul><ul><li>A real political portrait projecting state power: Tudors very political with a tenuous grasp on power </li></ul><ul><li>Note Red Hair </li></ul><ul><li>Actual colour red and gold (Powerful and forceful) </li></ul><ul><li>What about that cod-piece? </li></ul><ul><li>Legs hugely important for a man of the time. </li></ul><ul><li>Renaissance elbow </li></ul><ul><li>Bombazine breeches </li></ul>
  21. 21. A Chip of the Old Tudor Block <ul><li>Edward VI about 10 or 12 years old (Died of TB about 15) </li></ul><ul><li>Showing he was his father’s son, a necessity to carry the line </li></ul><ul><li>Red Hair? (Deliberate or would have been painted out. </li></ul><ul><li>Cod piece reflecting father’s virility. Renaissance elbow </li></ul><ul><li>An outward sign to the world of powerful continuity </li></ul><ul><li>Fur is Lynx </li></ul><ul><li>Wheat colour is hope. </li></ul>
  22. 22. 1546 Princess Elizabeth <ul><li>The Tudors were perhaps the first monarchs to understand the importance of public relations and they carefully prepared their image for public consumption. </li></ul><ul><li>There is certainly little warmth in any of the portraits, but there is much majesty. </li></ul><ul><li>  </li></ul><ul><li>note: As students of Elizabeth's 1 st life know, the queen was very proud of her beautiful hands.  She considered them her best feature and took pains to have them prominently displayed in all of her state portraits.  As you view the following images, please note this recurring feature. </li></ul>
  23. 23. Who is this Woman? <ul><li>Black and Serious: Black and white of virtue. </li></ul><ul><li>Liturgical gloves but colour faded </li></ul><ul><li>Ermine for wealth and purity. </li></ul><ul><li>Every indication that she would marry and not be the dominant partner </li></ul><ul><li>Wealth and warmth in a cold setting </li></ul><ul><li>Sumptuary laws heavily concerned with fur </li></ul><ul><li>No indication of red hair: image change? </li></ul><ul><li>Actual picture russet and blue </li></ul><ul><li>Broken ruff for unmarried woman </li></ul>
  24. 24. Pelican Portrait 1575 <ul><li>This portrait is held by the National Portrait Gallery , London.  It is not on display.  this picture shows the growing stylization of images of the queen.  There is a closed imperial crown over each shoulder.  The crown is on top of both a rose (on the left) and a fleur-de-lys (on the right.)  These represent her dynastic claims to both England and France.  The Pelican pendant on her breast symbolizes charity and redemption.  It represents the queen's selfless love of her subjects. How? According to legend, the pelican pricked its own breast to feed its children with the blood. Elizabeth wore a pelican jewel in several state portraits to remind the English of her equally selfless love. </li></ul>
  25. 25. 1580-85 Peace Portrait <ul><li>1580-5, by Marcus Gheeraerts the Elder.  In this portrait, the queen is the harbinger of peace.  She holds an olive branch in her left hand and a sheathed sword lies at her feet.  She is possibly wearing the same headdress, collar and girdle from the 'Ermine Portrait'.  Also, both gowns are 'Polish style' with froggings. </li></ul><ul><li>From the date, we can assume the symbolism refers to the turbulent situation in the Netherlands. </li></ul><ul><li>Not usual face pattern </li></ul><ul><li>Note dog, carrying a paper fan. Note ‘white boys’. </li></ul>
  26. 26. The Italian Job ? (Believed to be 1575-1579) <ul><li>Zuccaro (or not) </li></ul><ul><li>Excommunicated in 1870 so probably closer to this date. </li></ul><ul><li>Ruff conspicuous consumption (10 metres) sin of linen </li></ul><ul><li>The Face Pattern for all later work </li></ul><ul><li>Dyed Ostrich fan of Virginia </li></ul><ul><li>Pearls on breast for virtue Ribbons on sleeve where sleeves joined </li></ul><ul><li>Pomander or mirror on ribbon </li></ul><ul><li>Face make-up up to half inch of white lead </li></ul><ul><li>Eliz colours. Black and white of purity, red and gold of power </li></ul><ul><li>Red Wig </li></ul><ul><li>Spanish Farthingale (Armada 1588) </li></ul><ul><li>The aristocratic English Lady </li></ul><ul><li>Purchased in 1925 for 1500 pounds </li></ul>
  27. 27. The ‘Sieve’ Portraits (1579-1580 <ul><li>At least six different versions at different times </li></ul><ul><li>Painted to represent rather than be representative </li></ul><ul><li>Ruff getting larger still Spanish Farthingale </li></ul><ul><li>Black and white and grey (Constance and purity) </li></ul><ul><li>Pearls of Virtue </li></ul><ul><li>‘ White boys’ in background </li></ul><ul><li>Tuccia Vestal Virgin </li></ul>
  28. 28. GLORIANA (1588) Gower <ul><li>A Mature Elizabeth not as a woman but as the embodiment of the power and wealth of England </li></ul><ul><li>Huge dangers: Religion, Spanish, Scots, Ireland </li></ul><ul><li>An Imperial Caricature </li></ul><ul><li>Pearl trinity? </li></ul><ul><li>Pearl Codpiece </li></ul><ul><li>Red wig </li></ul><ul><li>Hand on globe showing imperial reach </li></ul><ul><li>Clothes show magnificence, glory and wealth </li></ul><ul><li>Now wearing a French Farthingale </li></ul>
  29. 29. Ditchley Portrait (1592) <ul><li>Very much an embodiment of England. </li></ul><ul><li>Painted for Elizabeth to succour favour. </li></ul><ul><li>Standing on a map of Southern England (Oxford) Seat of past champion Sir Henry Lee. </li></ul><ul><li>Married to England: dress probably never existed. All in white as the shining light. Tudor rose in ruff. </li></ul><ul><li>A woman but not a woman </li></ul>
  30. 30. A Problem 1600 <ul><li>A Coronation Picture but painted on her death. </li></ul><ul><li>Virgin long hair </li></ul><ul><li>Henry’s Hair </li></ul><ul><li>Ermine on Robes </li></ul><ul><li>Succession?? </li></ul>
  31. 31. Men’s Clothes Told the Story <ul><li>Dudley of Leicester </li></ul><ul><li>Male clothing dandified </li></ul><ul><li>One of the ‘white boys’ </li></ul><ul><li>Faithful dog: hound upper class </li></ul><ul><li>Glamour and passion of young men. Elizabeth always associated herself. Young men possess humour of heat and light and war </li></ul><ul><li>Note the elbow </li></ul>
  32. 32. A Procession as the Light of England Countess of Southampton: French Farthingale
  33. 33. In Contrast the ‘Melancholy’ Statesman <ul><li>Black for gravitas and dependability. Age gives wisdom </li></ul><ul><li>Humour of Black bile and melancholy </li></ul><ul><li>Men of age and self control </li></ul><ul><li>Ruff a sign of conspicuous consumption. </li></ul><ul><li>Opposite of white boys </li></ul><ul><li>But take care not to look too Catholic </li></ul><ul><li>Thomas Walsingham the Spy Master </li></ul>
  34. 34. Mr and Mrs Andrews <ul><li>An early Gainsborough (1749) </li></ul><ul><li>22 Year old Robert Andrews (Painter’s friend </li></ul><ul><li>16 year old Francis Carter </li></ul><ul><li>9 children (Her 48, him 80) </li></ul><ul><li>Note patch on dress </li></ul><ul><li>I am filthy rich because look at all that land behind me. </li></ul><ul><li>Scene still exists: not bench </li></ul><ul><li>Dressed in similar colours and materials </li></ul><ul><li>Note Dog women remarkably free except for inheritance. </li></ul>
  35. 35. The Same Set-Up <ul><li>Mr and Mrs Coltman </li></ul><ul><li>Joseph Wright </li></ul><ul><li>(1734 – 1797) </li></ul>
  36. 36. But 30 Years later <ul><li>Mr and Mrs Hallet </li></ul><ul><li>Gainsborough </li></ul><ul><li>“ Men in Black” </li></ul><ul><li>Beau Brummel said you can tell a gentleman (English of course) by the cut of his clothes) </li></ul><ul><li>Last vestiges of old ways but Professionalism, trust. Law, church, property </li></ul><ul><li>She now is responsible for showing the family wealth particularly as you could not work in those clothes. </li></ul>
  38. 38. 200 Years Later <ul><li>Jean Muir </li></ul><ul><li>1995 </li></ul><ul><li>The Professional Woman in Black </li></ul><ul><li>No frills: feminine and beautifully cut </li></ul>
  39. 39. Real Propaganda Through Dress <ul><li>Heinrich Knirr </li></ul><ul><li>1936 </li></ul><ul><li>Stamps etc </li></ul>
  40. 40. Propaganda at its Peak <ul><li>Kursell </li></ul><ul><li>1941 </li></ul>
  41. 41. Nazi Ideology Through Dress
  43. 43. Contrasts
  44. 44. The Modern World <ul><li>Clothes (or the lack of them) still sell a lifestyle and an aspiration image </li></ul>
  45. 45. But you can really get it wrong <ul><li>Did it hit its correct audience? </li></ul><ul><li>Or did it actually improve sales to those who matter and who identified </li></ul><ul><li>Also, look at those shoes! </li></ul>
  46. 46. FASHION: THE VISUAL IMAGE Symbolism, Power and Representation: Dress in Portraits