“Following the Fashion” a December 1794 caricature by James Gillray, which satirizes incipient neo-Classical trends in women’s clothing styles, particularly the trend towards what were known at the time as “short-bodied gowns” (i.e. short-bodiced or high-waisted dresses). This caricature satirizes the figure-type which is most flattered by high-waisted dresses, contrasting it with a body-type which was not flattered by the style — as well as playing on the perennial struggle between attempts of the “Cits” (families of rich merchants in the City of London area) to imitate the stylish aristocrats of west London, versus the determination of the aristocrats to socially repulse the Cits, and consider them to be still unstylish.
Text in image:
“St. James’s giving the Ton: a soul without a body” [i.e. bodice]
“Cheapside aping the mode: a body without a soul.”
I love fat ladies in art. Unfortunately, most of them are unflattering caricatures. But because I don’t find fat unflattering, I love them anyways. And that last drawing “Dido in Despair” makes me unbelievably happy.