This Pink Satin women’s shoe circa 1858 is typical of the dainty, flat-soled slippers that well-to-do Victorian women wore as evening wear and to formal events throughout most of the 19th century.
The delicate natured of women’s footwear indicates that even when outside of the home, the ideal Victorian lady did not require functional or reliable shoes. As the century went on, flat slippers like these were replace by heeled satin pumps.
Photographed as Part of the Exhibit Rebel Women: Defying Victorianism, On View at the Museum of the City of New York Through January 6th, 2019.
In his painting from 1931, Grant Wood (1892 – 1942) depicts the legendary story of the American patriot Paul Revere, as learned from an 1863 poem by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow. From a bird’s eye view, the painting shows Revere on horseback racing through a colonial town square in Massachusetts. Despite the work’s historical subject matter, Wood did not attempt to depict this scene with factual accuracy. The houses are overly bright, as if lit by electric light, and the dramatic moonlight casts unrealistic shadows. The stylized houses, geometric greenery, and high perspective gives the painting and otherworldly or dreamlike dimensions.