The Re-Birth of Venus:
Fashion & the Venus Kallipygos

 
Anne Bissonnette, PhD, Sarah Nash, and Loretta Yau,
exhibition co-curators.
May 3, 2013 to March 2, 2014

This exhibition is part of the graduate course
"Material Culture & Curatorship" (HECOL 668)
in the Department of Human Ecology.
 

CLICK on PHOTO for multiple images and label

 


  
  
 

    

 

Hunter Green Bias-cut Evening Dress
Michael Kaye Couture, New York, made especially for the University of Alberta Centenary Collection in 2008.
4-ply silk satin gown and taffeta bow.
On loan courtesy of Michael Kaye.
 
Worn with:
Bronze Leather T-strap High Heeled Shoes
Werner Kerr, Italy, ca. 2004.
Anonymous loan
 

Paper hair by Loretta Yau.
Photograph by Anne Bissonnette© 

Bias-cut construction continues to be popular due to its ability to display the body through cloth.

 

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Print of a detail of The Birth of Venus
Sandro Boticelli, Florence, Italy, ca.1485.
Galleria degli Uffizi Florence Anonyous loan.

  

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Replica Venus Kallipygos
The Museum Store Company, USA, 1997.
White bonded stone.
Anonymous loan.
 

The Venus Kallipygos is readily available through novelty reproductions. This is a testimony to her continued popularity.

  

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Venus de’ Medici
Unknown creator, possibly either from the Portico of Octavia at Rome or Hadrian’s Villa at Tivoli, probably produced in the 1st century BCE, but likely a copy of an earlier Hellenistic original.
Marble.
Uffizi Gallery (inv. 224), Florence, Italy.
©2006, SCALA, Florence / ART RESOURCE, N.Y.
Reproduced within ArtStor’s Terms and Conditions.

 

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Venere uscita dal bagno in atto d’asciugarsi
(Venus leaving the bath and drying herself)
Print from Domenico de Rossi & Paolo Alessandro Maffei’s Raccolta di statue antiche e moderne, 1704.
The Warburg Library Institute, London, United Kingdom.
Reproduced within ArtStor’s Terms and Conditions.

See the publication on the Warburg Library Institute’s Web site at page 72 of http://warburg.sas.ac.uk/pdf/ckn1098b2617502.pdf.

 

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Toletta di Venere
Caliari Paolo, ca. 1570-1585.
Oil on canvas.
Joslyn Art Museum (inv. 42.4), Omaha, USA.
Reproduced within ArtStor’s Terms and Conditions.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Reproduction Ionic Chiton
ca. 550-480 BCE
White linen sewn into a tube and attached over the arms with metal pins to resemble fibulae.
 

Photograph by Anne Bissonnette©
 

Within ancient Greek civilization, white unadorned garments were often associated with purity and required for certain forms of worship. Dyes and pigments were used for clothing and statuary but faded over centuries.
 

Early chitons consisted of a simple rectangle of wool cloth folded along one side of the body and pinned at the shoulders. The “Ionic” chiton was fuller and often made of pleated linen. While belting provided fit and endless variations, garments were neither sheer nor cut to emphasize the body’s shape.

 

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Poster of the Venus Kallipygos – Back View
Artflake Company, 2013.
Unknown creator, possibly from Nero’s Domus Aurea, Rome, Italy, probably 1st century BCE.
Marble.
National Archaeological Museum (inv. Mus. Naz. 6020), Naples, Italy.
Anonymous loan.
 

Both the front and back of the statue provide ideal viewpoints since the drapery and nudity are as noteworthy. Although it could have been an innovative piece, it is more likely a reproduction of a bronze original due to the composition, surface treatment and imperfections. If this is so, then the nudity, torsion and multiple viewing angles indicate that the original would not be earlier than the Hellenistic period.
 

Such reproductions demonstrate Rome’s predilection for Greek art.  As Horace (Epistles II.I.156-157) famously proclaimed, “conquered Greece captivated her savage conqueror and brought forth the arts into rustic Latium.”

 

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Venus Kallipygos– Front View
National Archaeological Museum (inv. Mus. Naz. 6020), Naples, Italy.
©2006, SCALA, Florence / ART RESOURCE, N.Y.
Reproduced within ArtStor’s Terms and Conditions.

 

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Print of Venus Kallipygos
From Gérard Audran’s Proportions du corps humains, mesurées sur les plus belles figures de l’antiquité, 1683.
German translation published in 1690.
The Warburg Library Institute, London, United Kingdom.
Reproduced within ArtStor’s Terms and Conditions.
 

See the publication on the Warburg Library Institute’s Web site at page 23 of http://warburg.sas.ac.uk/pdf/cbh715b2430595.pdf.

 

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Copy of Venus Kallipygos
Copy by Jean-Jacques Clérion and François Barois commissioned by Louis XIV.
Gardens of Versailles, France, 1686.
Marble statue eventually moved to the Tuileries Gardens in Paris.
Reproduced within ArtStor’s Terms and Conditions.

 

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Portrait of a Roman Matrona as Venus Felix
Unknown creator, produced in the 2nd century CE, but copy of a Hellenistic original.
Marble.
Pio-Clementino Museum (inv. 936), Vatican City.
©2006, SCALA, Florence / ART RESOURCE, N.Y.
Reproduced within ArtStor’s Terms and Conditions.

 

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Detail of a Portrait of Countess Ulla von Höpken as Venus Kallipygos
Marble statue by Johan Tobias Sergel, produced ca. 1780.
Nationalmuseum (inv. NM Sk 360), Stockholm, Sweden.
Photo © Nationalmuseum, Stockholm.
Reproduced with permission.

 

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Portrait of Yolande Duchesse de Polignac
Elisabeth-Louise Vigée-Le Brun, 1782.
Oil on canvas.
Wadsworth Atheneum, 2002.13.1, Hartford, Connecticut, USA.
© Erich Lessing/ART RESOURCE, N.Y.
Reproduced within ArtStor’s Terms and Conditions.
 

Scroll down to the third visual on the Wadsworth Atheneum’s link  http://www.thewadsworth.org/medieval-to-monet-french-paintings-in-the-wadsworth-atheneum/

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  

  

 

 

White Muslin High-waisted and Short-sleeved Dress with Silver Dot Decoration
Unknown creator and place of origin, ca. 1808-1812.
Cotton muslin and glued silver foil.
Human Ecology’s Clothing and Textiles Collection.
University of Alberta School of Household Economics, 1974.9.4.
Artifact adopted by Peggy Isley, March 2013.
 

Worn with:
Square Turnover Shawl with Red Field and Multicolored Decorative Borders
Unknown creator, Europe, ca. 1810-1830.
Silk field and wool borders.
Pieced borders woven au lancé on a jacquard loom to create paisley (boteh) motifs.
Human Ecology’s Clothing and Textiles Collection,
Donated by Janice Hanson, 1997.4.1.
Artifact adopted by Peggy Isley, March 2013.
 

Black Satin Slipper Shoes
Unknown creator, Canada, ca. 1820s-1830s.
Silk and leather.
Human Ecology’s Clothing and Textiles Collection,
Donated by Jim Whittome, 2001.6.8ab.
 

Ivory Kid Gloves, 20th century
Human Ecology’s Clothing and Textiles Collection,
Donated by Louise & Mary Calder, 1979.1.14ab.
Reproduction cotton under dress.
 

Photograph by Anne Bissonnette©

 

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Cutout of the Left Side of the Engraving “Les Merveilleuses
Louis Darcis (?-1801) after Carle Vernet (1758-1836), 1796.
Engraving “au pointillé” on paper.
Museum of London, 2002.139.990.
Photograph reproduced in the exhibition with permission from the Museum of London.

 

 

Journal des Dames et des Modes, Year 7, plate 126.
Paris, 22 September 1798 - 22 September 1799.
Photograph by Anne Bissonnette© from an artifact in the collection of Musée de la Mode et du Costume, Palais Galliera.

 

 

 

  

 

Journal des Dames et des Modes, 1798, plate 4. 
Paris, ca. 30 Nivôse (19 January) 1798.
Photograph by Anne Bissonnette© from an artifact in the collection of Musée de la Mode et du Costume, Palais Galliera.

 

 

 

 

 JDM Year 7, Plate 148

Journal des Dames et des Modes, Year 7, plate 148.
Paris, 22 September 1798 - 22 September 1799.
Photograph by Anne Bissonnette© from an artifact in the collection of Musée de la Mode et du Costume, Palais Galliera.

 

 

 

 

 JDM Year 6, Plate 40

Journal des Dames et des Modes, Year 6, plate 40.
Paris, 22 September 1797 - 21 September 1798.
Photograph by Anne Bissonnette© from an artifact in the collection of Musée de la Mode et du Costume, Palais Galliera.

 

 

 

 

 JDM Year 8, Plate 195 Journal des Dames et des Modes, Year 8, plate 195.
Paris, 23 September 1799 - 22 September 1800.
Photograph by Anne Bissonnette© from an artifact in the collection of Musée de la Mode et du Costume, Palais Galliera.

 

   

 

 

 JDM Year 11 Plate 449

Journal des Dames et des Modes, Year 11, plate 449.
Paris, 23 September 1802 - 23 September 1803.
Photograph by Anne Bissonnette© from an artifact in the collection of Musée de la Mode et du Costume, Palais Galliera.

 

 

 

 

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The Exhibition ‘Starecase’, Somerset House
Watercolour drawing by Thomas Rowlandson, ca. 1800.
Yale Centre for British Art (B1981.25.2893), New Haven, USA.
Reproduced within ArtStor’s Terms and Conditions.

 

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Portrait of Madame Tallien
After a painting by Baron Francois Gerard, 19th century.
Musee Carnavalet, Paris, France.
Reproduced within ArtStor’s Terms and Conditions.
 

This pencil on paper visual depicting Madame Tallien with one breast exposed is related to  this portrait where her shift barely covers said breast: http://www.carnavalet.paris.fr/en/collections/portrait-de-madame-tallien-1773-1835

 

 

Journal des Dames et des Modes, 1809, plate 955.
Paris.
Photograph by Anne Bissonnette© from an artifact in the collection of
Musée de la Mode et du Costume, Palais Galliera.

 

 

 

 

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Portrait of Countess Ulla von Höpken as Venus Kallipygos
Marble statue by Johan Tobias Sergel, produced ca. 1780.
Nationalmuseum (inv. NM Sk 360), Stockholm, Sweden.
Photo © Nationalmuseum, Stockholm.
Reproduced with permission.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  

  

 

 

 

 

 

 

Pink Evening Dress with Presentation Train
Unknown maker, United Kingdom, ca. 1880s.
Plain and brocaded silk faille.
Human Ecology’s Clothing and Textiles Collection.
1987.27.1
 

Worn with
Black Ribbon Neck Ribbon with Ornament, late 19th- early 20th century.
Silk, brass and rhinestone.
Human Ecology’s Clothing and Textiles Collection,
Donated by Shirley Ronaghan, 1989.8.21.
 

Painted Silk and Ivory Fan, late 19th- early 20th century. 
Human Ecology’s Clothing and Textiles Collection,
Donated by Jessie Morrison, 1996.3.4.
 

Ivory Kid Gloves, early 20th century 
Human Ecology’s Clothing and Textiles Collection,
Donated by Wendy Davis, 1999.2.2ab.
 

Ivory Silk Satin Shoes, ca. 1900-1905.
Human Ecology’s Clothing and Textiles Collection,
Donated by Robert Folinsbee, 1992.3.1ab.
 

Paper hair by Loretta Yau.
Photograph by Anne Bissonnette©

 

 

 

 

 

Crimson “Delphos” Pleated Silk Dress with Gold-stenciled Belt
Designed by Mariano Fortuny, Venice, Italy.
Purchased in Paris, France, by Mrs Thankmar von Münchhausen (1895-1974) in the late 1930s.
Silk and Murano glass beads.
Loan by the Speyart family, The Netherlands.
 

Worn with
Embroidered Red Shoes
J. Pinel, Paris, ca. 1920s
Silk, beading and metal embroidery.
Human Ecology’s Clothing and Textiles Collection,
Donated by Banff Centre Of Fine Arts, 1981.13.82ab
 

Paper hair by Loretta Yau.
Photograph by Anne Bissonnette©

 

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Half-scale Reproduction Toile of 1918-1919 Vionnet Dress
Therese Martinez-Yu, draping exercise based on Betty Kirke’s Pattern 1 in Madeleine Vionnet (Tokyo, Japan: Kyuryudo Art Publishing Co., Ltd., 1991; reprint, San Francisco: Chronicle Books, 1998), 47.
Loan from Therese Martinez-Yu.
 

In creating this garment, Madeleine Vionnet drew direct inspiration from Classical Greek dress with the use of cowl neckline and draped extension of cloth forming multiple “jabots.” The dress is cut from four pattern pieces cut on grain but hung on the bias. As it spirals around the body, the fluttering pieces help to recall the designer’s love of Greek aesthetics.

 

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Poster of Jean Harlow from the1937 Movie Saratoga in a Dress by Dolly Tree
Unknown creator, USA, 1937.
Anonymous loan.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ivory Floral-printed Bias-cut Evening Dress
Unknown creator, ca. 1930s.
Silk crepe.
Human Ecology’s Clothing and Textiles Collection.
Transferred from the University of Alberta Drama Department, 77.5.101.
 

Worn with:
Silver Leather Top-stitched T-strap High Heeled Shoes
Hudson’s Bay Company, Edmonton, Canada, ca. 1930s-1959.
Human Ecology’s Clothing and Textiles Collection.
Gift of Sheila Kelcher, 1998.33.101a & b.
 

Installation pearl necklace.
 

Paper hair by Anne Thomas.
Photograph by Anne Bissonnette©