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"1762 Doll" by Edward Molyneux, 1949

From the Metropolitan Museum of Art

Molyneux’s contribution features janseniste panniers, and was inspired by a portrait of Madame de Pompadour by de la Tour. Janseniste panniers were shorter and lighter-weight, stiffened with horsehair or boning and popular in the second half of the 18th-century. They were similar to English pocket panniers and allowed the wearer to access pockets in undergarments. Maurice Quentin de La Tour (1704-1788) was the French portrait artist to King Louis XV of France from 1750 to 1773. During his tenure, one of his many subjects was that of Madame de Pompadour (1721-1764), the famous courtesan and official mistress of Louis XV. “Madame Pompadour” (1755) depicts her in her home surrounded by books and works of art, alluding to her desire to enlighten the French court with the intellectual developments of Parisian culture at the time.


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