Fashion and Art – Jean Aguste Dominique – Ingres

Two social phenomenons, both expressing their time. Two different things that go so well together like coffee and newspaper in the morning. Or tea, whichever you prefer 

Fashion and Art. Nothing inspires Fashion more than Art, and Art is the best way to express Fashion. Perfect combination. They have one major thing in common – they both use fabric as their tool.

I decided to write something like this because from very young age, I admire these two subjects, and growing up I realized their link. This is my first post with this title, but I will write more, because they both are endless inspiration to me.

And for opening volume one from this series, I chose the great French Neoclassical painter Jean-Aguste-Dominique Ingres. And I chose him because of this painting and this dress in particular :

On the painting above is princess Albert de Broglie. It’s made in 1853 and its forever home is the Metropolitan Museum of Art. Actually this painting inspired me to start writing this  post and the others that will come with the same thematic.

The fabrics are painted so perfectly, look so real and almost touchable. The shadows and his drawing technique make this dress look even realer than some of today’s fashion photographs. This is typical early 19th century fashion with the rich embroidery, full skirts and different kinds of jewelry. She is wearing baby blue gown with a very open V neck and bare shoulders, which were considered very sexy at that time. The dress has pieces of lace that make him so romantic, gentle and even innocent. The blue silky ribbons that emerge beneath the lace layers add a playful effect to the simplicity of the dress. She’s wearing a head piece probably from the same material. She had golden ring, bracelet and big pendant necklace. On her left hand you can see how well the pearl necklace acts as a bracelet. That’s one fashion and style tip you can learn from her. 

A masterpiece, isn’t it?

The next painting from him is the famous Napoleon I on his Imperial Throne.

Made in 1806 it shows Napoleon sitting on his throne, wearing his coronation costume. We’ve got some royal fashion right here. Knowing Napoleon as the luxurious fella he was, it is no wonder that his white shoes are embroidered in gold. Actually everything from this outfit is embroidered in gold even his gloves. This satin tunic looks so big and hard. It resembles Rihanna’s yellow Met Gala 2015 cloak made by Guo Pei. He does not wear any jewelry except that big gold necklace with star pendant. Which is enough I think.

Who knows how hard was for Ingres to paint all these beautiful details which such a precision. But that’s why he was such a great painter.

The next one is Mme. Moitessier, finished in 1856. This is his second portrait of her. Residing in the National Gallery in London it shows Marie-Clotilde-Inès de Foucauld, later madame Moitesser, sitting in her pink chair with her floral dress. Her shoulders are bare, there’s only one type of flowers on the fabric, and I like the tassels on the upper part of the dress. I guess this is where Olivier Rousteing found the inspiration for his Fall Winter 2016 collection. She is wearing lacy head piece and jewelry with precious stones.

And for the end, here is Baronne de Rothschild, portrait finished in 1848. Such a romantic dress. The combination of blue and pink is very cute. The whole outfit is so girly, especially the pink bows on the end of the dress. The upper part is similar to the first dress, which proves that bare shoulders were major trend back in the 19th century. She wears pearls and bracelet with precious stones. What I find interesting is her hat. It doesn’t go well with the sweetness of the dress, it’s more strong and simple and maybe showing the true Betty de Rothschild, hiding beneath this rose puffy gown. How one small detail can make you look the whole outfit with different perception.

Although Ingres self described himself as a painter of history, it were his portraits that gave him the recognition as one of the greatest french painters. His attention to details is beyond words! If he were born in this century he would make a hella good fashion photographer don’t you think so?

Yours fashionably,

Mademoiselle Matea