Small Show at the V&A: Fashion Plates and Fashion Satire

Posted in exhibitions by Editor on September 15, 2010

From the V&A:

Fashion Fantasies: Fashion Plates & Fashion Satire, 1775-1925
Victoria & Albert Museum, London, 21 June 2010 — January 2011

Robert Dighton, "May," from the series "Allegorical Representations of the Months," watercolour, bodycolour and ink on paper, ca. 1785 (London: V&A, Museum No. E37 - 1947)

This display juxtaposes two genres of print that fantasise fashion on paper: fashion plates and graphic social satire. The fashion plate communicated changes in fashion but also encouraged viewers to engage with a luxurious fantasy. At the same time fashionable dress was subject to imaginative distortions in the hands of graphic satirists interested in exposing social foibles. From the oversize wigs of the 1770s to the short skirts and fur stoles of the 1920s, the display charts the dialogue between fashion plate and fashion satire.

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