Panel, 1700-1710

Unknown artist, expand_more
Not on Viewexpand_more

Silk textiles were powerful indicators of status and taste in 1700s Europe. Though the form of garments evolved relatively slowly, with changes measured in years and decades, textile patterns and colors changed seasonally, even monthly.

France was the undisputed leader in textile design. This was largely thanks to the French king Louis XIV (1638–1715) and his finance minister, Jean-Baptiste Colbert (1619–1683), who regarded fashion as the key to France’s economic success. They encouraged design innovation and placed high taxes on imports. At the same time, newly emerging French periodicals that mixed news and gossip dictated which fabrics were “in” and “out.”

Accession Number
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