A Tribute to Madame de Pompadour: Rory Hutton X The French Porcelain Society
The 300th birthday of Madame de Pompadour, member of the French court and King Louis XV’s mistress, provides the inspiration for this special commemoritive scarf.
I was delighted to have been approached by The French Porcelain Society to design this scarf to mark this landmark anniversary. Madame de Pompadour has been my constant muse since I first read Nancy Mitford’s biography, which spoke eloquently of Madame’s kindness and joie de vivre. Her love of porcelain inspired my decision to start my own collection so, given everything that I owe to Madame de Pompadour, I do hope that my new scarf is a fitting and respectable homage to her.
Framed within garlands of flowers, the Madame de Pompadour scarf features the famous elephant-head vases, the Pompadour coat-of-arms, a rococo teapot, and a porcelain vergette, a small brush for brushing away wig powder. To reflect Madame's interest in gardens and clothes I included a garden hoe and a high heeled shoe with diamond buckle.
The colours chosen are inspired by the distinctive Vincennes/Sèvres palette of bleu céleste, a turquoise sky blue, and rose-pink, all of which are found on the porcelains that she cherished.
The opportunity to have esteemed historians Dame Rosalind Savil and Patricia Ferguson oversee my work was a real privilege and the end result is a true collaboration.
The scarf measures 90 x 90cm and can be purchased through The French Porcelain Society website – www.thefrenchporcelainsociety.com. The prints have also been used on a pack of greetings cards, also available through the website. All profits raised will benefit the Society’s work and the advancement of research in the area of European ceramics.
Madame de Pompadour Greetings Cards.
The release of this scarf coincides with the publication of ‘Everyday Rococo: Madame de Pompadour and Sèvres Porcelain’ by the President of The French Porcelain Society, Dame Rosalind Savill. This handsome, two-volume tome is a richly-illustrated chronology of Madame de Pompadour’s daily life and purchases. Both, a social history revealing Madame de Pompadour as a major player in the art and politics of eighteenth-century France, and a detailed analysis of the everyday details of Madame's life, for which Vincennes/Sevres catered so perfectly.
In addition, the theme is the subject of a two-week exhibition of objects loaned by members of The French Porcelain Society. The exhibition will be held at Bonhams, 110 New Bond Street from 5 - 17 December.