Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Fun with Marie Antoinette & co.

I was invited to join the Marie Antoinette pool on flickr a couple of weeks ago. This posed a challenge as up to now, I've been using mainly photographic images in my work, not old paintings. Since photography wasn't around in the 1700's, I didn't have much choice. All imagery is public domain or donated by contacts. I hunted down some info on both ladies as I knew very little about them.

Marie-Louise, princesse de Lamballe, born in Turin, Italy, 1749, was a member of the House of Savoy. After her marriage to a French nobleman, she became the confidante of Queen Marie Antoinette of France. She was appointed Superintendent of the Household, the highest rank possible for a lady-in-waiting at Versailles, which earned Lamballe the resentment of many other aristocrats. Her brutal murder during the French Revolution sparked a movement of anti-revolutionary propaganda, which ultimately led to the development and implementation of the Reign of Terror.

Marie Antoinette, born in 1755 in Vienna, Austria, was the ill-fated child princess who married France's young and indifferent King Louis XVI. Feeling isolated in a royal court rife with scandal and intrigue, Marie Antoinette defied both royalty and commoner by living like a rock star, which served only to seal her fate.
During the Reign of Terror, at the height of the French Revolution, Marie Antoinette's husband was deposed and the royal family was imprisoned. Marie Antoinette was tried, convicted of treason and executed by guillotine on 16 October 1793, nine months after her husband.

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