7/04/2008

Portrait of the week - Morning toilette


The morning toilette, by Jean-Baptiste Siméon Chardin, circa 1740.

This painting shows a woman and a girl getting ready in front of a mirror. The title of the painting tells of it being morning and the painters nationality reveals that the ladies in all probability were French. Chardin lived in Paris and rarely left the city.

As always Paris was the center of the fashionable world and the dresses worn by the ladies are a typical example of this. The girl is dressed just like the grown up, as was common among children, especially of the upper-classes.

They are both getting dressed to go out, most clearly perhaps revealed by the little muff the girl is holding in her hand. They are also both wearing jackets over the dresses. The shape of the dresses are on the other hand hard to decipher, you can tell that the general shape of them is of a kind common in the middle of the 18th century.

The painting can now be found at Nationalmuseum, Stockholm, Sweden.

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