Sunday, May 31, 2015

Wild Speculation

I'm going to veer off from my regularly-scheduled posts to indulge in a moment of pure conjecture. I thought about including this portrait in my post on Pre-1700 cotton printing, but decided it was too speculative. I'll share it here, and perhaps someone out there with more 17th century clothing expertise will be able to disprove my theory (which seems too good to be true) - that this is actually a printed fabric.

This is a detail of a painting in the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts by Floris van Schooten, ca. 1620. I can't find it on the museum's website, so I'm using the image I found via Pinterest.

My question to early 17th century embroidery experts: Does this look like a typical pattern to you? It instantly reminded me of a printed pattern, Though they are a hundred years later, lattice style patterns seemed to be popular in 18th century printed cottons. I couldn't find anything quite like this type of pattern when I looked at 17th century embroidered jackets. If you look very closely (by clicking the link to the Verte Adelie blog), you'll see that there are red dots interspersed with the black(?). I even wondered if the dots were something applied, like spangles. I would have expected them to appear shiny, though.

I wonder too, if the "fading" of some of the motifs was done intentionally by the painter or if it just represents the aging of the painting. If the fabric was an early European attempt at printing, it could just be oil paint on the textile, which wouldn't be very durable.

Embroidered? Painted/printed? The world may never know. Unless you comment with an answer, of course.

No comments:

Post a Comment