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Home /   Exhibitions /  Past Exhibitions / Powder and Patches: Porcelain for the Boudoir in 18th-Century Europe

Powder and Patches: Porcelain for the Boudoir in 18th-Century Europe

Mon Jun 06 to Sep 05, 2016All Day

Lobby Display

Richly furnished and infused with exotic scents, the lady’s boudoir held one of the rituals that most eloquently typified eighteenth-century refinement: the toilette. The toilette involved the dressing and accessorizing of hair and wigs, the application of make-up and patches, and the final stages of dressing, all in the company of friends, family members, and servants. Punctuated with light meals, conversation, and other activities, the toilette unfolded over several hours every morning. The lady of fashion rarely appeared in public before noon.

This display visualizes the refined atmosphere of the boudoir along with the beauty and social rituals of the toilette. Objects are both functional and decorative, and highlight the importance of porcelain in the consumption of some of the most fashionable and luxurious products of the time, including cosmetics, perfume, and snuff.