Michael Allen Lowe
Monument du Costume
63 x 96 in. INV #: MLowe-32955
Synopsis: This work was inspired by a Jean Michel Moreau drawing, La Déclaration de la Grossesse (Disclosure of Pregnancy), c.1775, an illustration for the Suite d'estampes pour servir à l'Histoire des Moeurs et du Costume Des francois dans le XVIIIe Siécle (The Monument du Costume), originally published in 1775. Lowe has referenced several fragments of this drawing: the reticule and fire screen, the decorative table and chairs, and two of the figures who
presumably represent the physician and grandmother-to-be. The physician’s
clothes have been fleshed-out in the manner of John Singer Sargent, resembling a costume of the artist’s Portrait of Carolus-Duran, c.1879. Lowe has replaced the expectant mother with an embracing nude couple after Fuseli’s Adam and Eve, c.1799. The backdrop for this scene echoes the hellish, surrealistic landscape
drawing The Temptation of St Anthony by Jacques Callot, c.1617. Lowe has painted over Callot’s cavernous landscape with an ethereal environment for this
annunciation, allowing only the red dragon to remain.
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