Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Lilly Martin Spencer, "Pealing Onions"

Pealing onions, from 1852, is one of the several scenes Lilly Martin Spencer produced of women

in the kitchen preparing meals. It is a realistic outlook on the mid 19th century domestic lifestyle. In this oil on canvas painting, a woman who is tearing up because of the onion she is cutting is highlighted in front of a dark background. The vegetables along with the pans/spoons around the onion give the image a more realistic feel because women typically set out all of the ingredients before cooking.

The real life aspect is greatly shown through because Lilly Martin Spencer actually used her family as models. The painting is as natural as a photograph, especially in "Kiss Me and You'll Kiss the 'Lasses" (1856). Which also has a darker background, with the woman standing out, cooking.

This image caught my attention because of the practical aspect of 19th century domestic "responsibilities." It really shows how hard women worked, yet it shows her in a nice blue dress, which is what women would have chosen to wear while cooking/cleaning house.

No comments:

Post a Comment