Civil War

Posted in Art, J. Paul Getty Museum, Photographs, Film, and Video

The Civil War in Pictures

Portrait of a Confederate Soldier/ unknown photographer
Portrait of a Confederate Soldier, about 1862, unknown photographer. Hand-colored ambrotype, 2 9/16 x 2 1/16 in. The J. Paul Getty Museum, 84.XT.818.16

The Civil War captured in early photographs, from young New Yorkers headed to the battlefield to Robert E. Lee one week after the surrender. More»

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      ROSE

      This milky pink boomed into popularity because of a marketing ploy, a mistress, and its ambiguous origins.

      In an effort to compete with the renowned Meissen porcelain factory, the French Sèvres manufactory recruited the glamorous Madame de Pompadour (mistress to King Louis XV). Like a smart sponsorship deal, Sèvres gave her all the porcelain she requested. 

      Introduced in 1757, this rich pink exploded on the scene thanks to favoritism by Madame Pompadour herself. 

      The glaze itself had a weird history. To the Europeans it looked Chinese, and to the Chinese it was European. It was made based on a secret 17th-century glassmaker’s technique, involving mixing glass with flecks of gold.

      For more on colors and their often surprising histories, check out The Brilliant History of Color in Art.

      12/19/14

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